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Cheese of the Month Club: November Edition

By Caroline Clough in Food on Nov 19, 2007 5:03PM

2007_november_chicagoist_cheesenov.jpgThis month we were originally going to look into one of the cheese readers recommended in October. But then we had all this apple pie to eat. And we had one of those zap-zippity-zap brain moments where we connected the dots and came up with the quite-brilliant plan of picking a cheese of the month that also complemented the apple pie recipe we shared with you last week. So we we went to the new Provenance location in Lincoln Square and asked the young lady behind the counter for a cheddar cheese with a little kick and a little fight.

We were given two samples and opted for the latter: Grafton four-year-old cheddar. Not only is this a great cheese to melt over a slice of pie, it also would be the perfect picnic or weekday cheese. It's more complex than grocery-store cheddars, yet not too pungent or sharp to pair with a sweet dish like homemade apple pie. It's the kind of cheese that reminds you of that friend you have who's quiet and polite most of the time, nice to look at but not all that interesting except they can be counted on to throw in a one-liner, posit an interesting theory or otherwise spice up any lackluster group conversation.

What we mean is this: the Grafton is a cheese that you could eat and not think much of unless you took the time to really taste it. Pairing it with pie is great but eating it straight up would do as well. It would be a nice addition to any Thanksgiving cheese plate. That's our story and we're sticking to it. We'd also like to note that the new Provenance is small but full of expensive gourmet treats. We seriously considered adding the $10 truffle salt and the duck salami to our cheese purchase.