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kalanyx-webFrom pasture to pasteurization, cheese making requires dedication, skill and passion. Considered a science and an art, it’s something Kala Nyx finds both beautiful and endearing. “I work with amazing products from all over the world – It’s pretty romantic, really,” says the Cheese Merchandiser. Kala learns about many types of cheeses, how they’re made and their history. And there are many emotional connections created in the process, she says.

141016HarvestCheeseSale-smMaybe it’s the beauty of the leaves turning colors, or the crisp air and return of the rain after a long summer, but to me one of the best things about October is the Harvest Cheese Sale!

Come visit your Market Cheese Shop from October 16-19 to taste some new favorites, and take a shot at the Guess the Weight of the Wheel contest. The grand prize this year is a mini BBQ, a football helmet fondue pot and one of each of the Harvest Sale items.

I’m always thrilled to gather amazing items for the Harvest Cheese Sale. Being able to find tasty things at fantastic prices is your Market Cheese Shop’s way of kicking off the holiday season. This year’s sale features a fun variety of textures and flavors.

Among our cheese selections are a variety of textures and flavors made of cows’ milk. Choose from Marinated Feta from Australia, creamy Joan of Arc Brie, or Rogue Creamery Blue Heaven, a powdered blue cheese that can also be sprinkled over popcorn.

We also have great goats’ milk cheeses available. Look for tangy chèvre and another version of the same spreadable treat rolled in herbs from Vermont. For the goat cheese lovers that like to slice and snack, try Billie’s Goat Cheddar from England.

That’s just a few of the cheeses you’ll be able to snag at great prices, while supplies last! There will also be a couple of fun, non-cheese items on the sale: Columbus Salame from San Francisco and adorable mini toasts from Three Little Pigs.

Mid-October’s shift in the weather is also a get excuse to have your first Raclette dinner of the season! In the 10/17 issue of Savories, our two-week circular, your Market Cheese Shop features three amazing flavored Raclettes from Emmi Roth USA. These cheeses are perfect over a plate of oven-roasted veggies, or melt them easily on a rustic pizza. Emmi Roth USA is a proud partner of the No Kid Hungry campaign, which is dedicated to ending child hunger in America by access, education and awareness. Learn more about No Kid Hungry at www.nokidhungry.org.

For Halloween, our Savories ad offers no tricks, just great prices on some of your favorite cheeses! Parmigiano-Reggiano, Cave-Aged Gruyere and Emmentaler Swiss will all be discounted $2 lb, just in time for fondue, French onion Soup and pasta dinners.

Enjoy the glory of October with all the fun features at your Market Cheese Shop!

140725KalaNyxCheeseBlog2Used by ancient Egyptians as currency and Native Americans to preserve fruit, honey has a wide range of applications, including being used for thousands of years as a base for folk medicinal recipes.

Its long history of being sought after and harvested is ever-present today, with people installing bee hives in their back yards to encourage the growth of honey bee populations and to produce more balance in the local environment, as well as more honey in local markets.

How do people use it? Some fellow Oregonians consume this sweet stuff daily for immunotherapy against allergens, embracing the theory that eating local honey produced by close-to-home can build up, in tiny amounts, the pollen spores within the body, reducing or eliminating allergic reactions people have to the same pollen during allergy seasons.

While I love the history and the fact that honey has lots of healthful, healing and environmental benefits – the truth is, I just want to eat it! I love it in my coffee, drizzled over fresh nectarine slices to top a wheel of Brie, and mixed with spicy, seedy mustard to glaze chicken. Sometimes, I even like a straight spoonful as an afternoon lift. The range of flavor intensity is as stunning to me as the color of a piece of honeycomb paired with great cheese and charcuterie. And it’s the perfect way to top cool yogurt on a hot day.

At your Market Cheese Shops, we are proud to feature honey from around the corner and around the world. Come by and taste a few and bring a little sweetness to your summer!
It’s that time again, when Oregonians walk outside, rub our eyes and behold that fireball in the sky called the sun! Along with a slowing in the rain, more sunshine and beautiful blooming trees, it’s also the time of year when calves, kids and lambs appear in the fields.

If you want to behold all that cuteness, check out the pictures of the quintuplets that Terry and Laurie Carlson at Fairview Farm Dairy in Dallas, Oregon, posted to their website. Besides being adorable and entertaining to watch as they frolic and play in the fields, this means an increase in milk and more local, fresh cheese!

At our Ashland store, spring has sprung as chèvre from Mama Terra Micro Creamery has arrived at our Market Cheese Shop. This wonderful soft cheese from Williams, Oregon, comes in unique flavors like Nettle and Bee Pollen. It’s perfect for topping your favorite crackers or broiling with olives on rustic bread. Come in and see all of the exciting additions, as we complete the remodel of our Ashland location this month!

Our stores in Eugene, Corvallis and West Linn are proud to feature fantastic fresh cheeses from Black Sheep Creamery in Adna, Washinton; Fern’s Edge chèvre and goat milk from Lowell, Oregon; and from Fairview Farm Dairy: delicious chèvre, Skyr, milk, drinkable yogurt and ice cream (found in our frozen foods aisle); as well as other Northwest favorites, such Fraga Farm and Portland Creamery cheeses.

I hope this time of year finds you out enjoying the weather and fresh cheeses from our beautiful region.
With the holidays fast approaching, I wanted to let you know about some of the exciting new things at your Market of Choice Cheese Shop that are excellent for entertaining and make great gifts.

131211blacktrufflebutterRegalis Truffle Delights
I have been waiting for more than a year to add Regalis White Truffle Olive Oil ($30.99, 250ml) to our lineup of choices. We also have Regalis Black Truffle Balsamic Glaze ($45.99, 250ml) and Wisconsin Truffle Butter ($10.29, 3.5oz) at your Cheese Shop. This company was founded by Ian Purkayastha, who began importing Italian truffles to the U.S. when he was just 15 years old. Ian has taken sunny California olive oil and creamy Wisconsin butter and blended them with his beloved truffles. I was lucky enough to sample these products and immediately took them to the stores for the Cheese Stewards to try. Everyone was excited, and I literally had to pry the Balsamic Glaze out of the hands of a few of them. I’ve already given a bottle of the balsamic glaze to a foodie friend of mine for his upcoming dinner party.

131211cheesebasketBrooklyn Slate Cheese Boards
When Sean Tice and Kristy Hadeka took a trip to New York to visit a slate quarry owned by Kristy’s relatives, they discovered what would become a burgeoning business. Available in two sizes, Brooklyn Slate Cheese Boards make the perfect contrasting surface for cheese. There’s even chalk provided, so you can write the name of the cheese on the slate. What a fun party idea! (10”x14” ($29.99) and 7”x12”($26.99)

33 Pieces of Cheese Booklets
These helpful little booklets make a wonderful stocking stuffer for your favorite cheese lover! Priced at $4.59 ea, this pocket-size booklet for logging tastings is easy to tuck away in a purse or pocket for emergency cheese-tasting and documentation. This is one in a series of tasting booklets that hail from Portland, Oregon.

Oregon Favorites
With friends and family coming to visit and celebrate this holiday season, here are just a few lovely local products that you can share with your visitors:
jelly1• Rose City Pepperhead’s Pepperjellies – Sweet and spicy pepper jellies made in Portland and available in a variety of flavors.
• Rogue Creamery – Making cheese in Central Point for more than 80 years, this local gem offers a variety of wonderful cheeses.
• Willamette Valley Cheese Company – This family-owned creamery close to Salem, Oregon, produces wonderful cows’ milk farmstead cheeses
• Oregon Growers & Shippers – Fantastic fruit spreads from the Hood River.  
• Market of Choice Charcuterie – Did you know that Market of Choice has its own Charcuterie line? We have proudly produced several flavors of pâtés, a decadent Duck Rillette and Duck Confit.
• Duck Pâté – Tangy green peppercorns and orange zest add zip and zing to seasoned ground duck. This pork-free pâté is perfect for entertaining. Perfect for dinner with roasted veggies!
• Northwest Cherry & Blue Pâté – A delectable blend of seasoned ground pork with brandy, Northwest Bing cherries, hazelnuts and Rogue Creamery blue cheese. This country-style pâté shines as an appetizer and is rich enough to pair with Port wine.
131211dukersdills Duck Leg Confit – Salt-cured and slow-cooked in garlic, shallots, Chablis wine, duck fat and herbs. Simply pan fry until crisp, shred and serve over salad greens. Delish!
• Duker’s Dills – Our favorite pickles from Portland, these spicy delights include Duker’s Dills, Carrots and Green Cherry Tomatoes and tangy Rose’s Rosemary Lemon Beans and Asparagus. Bring some pucker to your Bloody Mary or cheese plates with these pickled pleasures.

From the Market of Choice Cheese Shops, I wish you a very happy holiday season to include many great meals with the ones you love!
Market-PateI love October! The leaves turn vibrant colors, the air gets crisp, and there are lots of exciting things happening at your Market of Choice Cheese Shop.

The 6th Annual Harvest Cheese Sale is going on October 17-20. You'll find great deals, in a fantastic variety of textures and flavors. There's a variety of cheddars; creamy, spreadable cheeses; tasty Wisconsin Parmesan; and Havarti. Don’t forget to pick up some sweet Spanish Fig and Chocolate bars and sliced, savory Prosciutto from Italy at amazingly low prices; they'll make wonderful accents to your harvest cheese boards. In addition to these great deals, there’s also the annual “Guess the Weight of the Wheel” contest. Come in, take a guess, and see if your answer is close enough to enter the drawing for the grand prize!

We have also introduced our handcrafted Charcuterie Line made by your Market Chefs. These tasty creations include high-quality, humanely raised Carlton Farms pork, King Cole duck and Draper Valley chicken. Ideal for serving with fresh bread, the richness of our pâtés and rillettes is a yummy contrast to zesty mustards and pickled veggies.

Beaver Classic Cheese from Oregon State University will be available at all our Cheese Shops by the end of this month. Market of Choice is thrilled to be the first local retailer to carry this 9-month aged cheese handmade by students with fresh Jersey cow’s milk from the dairy at OSU. The story behind the resurrection of the dairy program at OSU and the Beaver Classic will be told in a future cheese blog from one of our stewards at our Corvallis Cheese Shop; check back soon!

With the weather ranging from blustery wind and rain to warm, crisp Indian Summer days ending with hazy sunsents, October is a great time to explore all the delicious new additions to your Market Cheese Shop!
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