I was really excited to jump right in and write about the four goat cheeses I bought at Cured. But, that has to wait a bit so I can tell you how very happy I was upon leaving Cured. It felt like a movie, or like I was magically somewhere else- walking through downtown Boulder with a small brown paper bag full of wine, plums, cheese, and a freshly baked baguette. This baguette was teasing me with a freshly baked aroma as I ducked into Topo Ranch to buy a birthday present for one of my favorite people in the world. I had a great conversation with the girl working at Topo Ranch about the baguette I got at Cured, my blog posts about cheese, the aroma of the baguette… and more about how I could hardly keep myself from biting right into the tip of the bread that stuck out of that slender brown bread bag.
Ahh… the baguette- it changed things that day. After an unnecessary splurge on my new bracelet (which I justified since I was so excited about the fresh bread) in addition to the important bday gift, I kept walking towards my car. It started to rain. My umbrella saved the day as the most important thing was keeping the baguette dry. A woman asked me if I had bought the bread at Panera bread. Oh, no ma’am. I went to Cured because I’m a food blogger on a mission to explore cheese and wine. And this baguette- well, it’s freshly baked by some guy named Steve who uses a local restaurant space to bake breads. This is no Panera bread baguette.
And so, I got home and unpacked my brown bag.
Coral Ferguson, co-owner of Cured, sent me home with four goat cheeses (beautifully wrapped like little cheese presents), locally grown plums, a bottle of Spanish rosé, and my baguette. Time to explore some goat cheeses.
I had a taste of Capriago (bottom left), Garrotxa (bottom right), Covered Bridge (upper right), and Goat Cheddar (upper left).
But, before I even unwrapped the cheeses, I tore off the top of that baguette and stood in the kitchen, silently enjoying my bread. I didn’t even put on music yet. Just ate the bread. It felt so good to devour the beautiful section of bread that had been teasing me for so long. I poured a glass of Borsao Rosé made from Spanish Garnacha grapes. I’m Spanish wines’ biggest fan, and I really enjoy rosé, so this was perfect for me. It was also light and fruity, which helped cut the fat from all of my cheeses.
So, I just sliced right into those cheeses. A little cheese and bread, sip of wine, bites of plum here and there. It was fun.
Capriago comes from the Bohemian Creamery in Sebastopol, CA. It’s a moist cheese that’s just slightly sweet, and I had no problem eating slice after slice. Yum. I would get this again.
Garrotxa (pronounced ga-ro-cha) comes from Catalonia, Spain. It’s mild, despite a moldy rind, with a delicate goat flavor- so, it didn’t taste too much like a barnyard. However, I tend to enjoy the barnyard in cheese while others do not, so that’s something to keep in mind with goat cheeses. It’s also the only cheese from this sampling that I found in The Murray’s Cheese Handbook, so I’ll quote. “This aged wheel is a brilliant expression of goat’s milk at its best.” I especially enjoyed this one.
Covered Bridge comes from Pholia Farms in Rogue River, OR. This cheese comes from Nigerian dwarf dairy goats. That’s unique. There was something different about this cheese, and it might be because the milk comes from dwarf goats. I know of a number of people who would find it too farmy, or too barny. When I compared it to the Capriago and Garroxta, I didn’t enjoy it as much. A friend actually spit it out, but that’s just rude, gross behavior, now isn’t it?
And finally, Goat Cheddar from Avalanche Goat Dairy in Basalt, CO. This is one I’m still unsure of. I had a problem with the mouth feel of this cheese. I felt a sensation of wet chalk or something, but the flavor was nutty and sweet. This cheese was also spit out by my friend- not once, but two or three times. I kept insisting on trying things over and over to really get an opinion. We both agreed that the texture of goat cheddar was a bit odd for us that evening. I’m open to trying it again, or something like it.
And so, my adventures in cheeses have officially begun. I’m so glad Cured is in town.
It was exciting to hear that Cured opened, so I had to stop by and check it out on opening day right after finishing a downtown dining tour. Opening day. The very thought of those two words together elicits a nervousness… What’s going to happen on opening day?
Turns out it went well. Coral and Will were busy helping customers when I first got there, so I took a look around and snapped a few iphone photos. I got to say hi to Coral, and she immediately sparked my interest in one of Nathan Miller’s chocolate bar samples that were tempting customers right next to the register. I could stop right here and say go to Cured just to try Nathan Miller’s chocolate. But I won’t. I’ll play off of that… I’ll say to go to Cured because they are an artisan cheese, cured meat, and wine shop that is right downtown (1825 B Pearl Street, Boulder, CO 80304). Go to Cured because, besides offering a thoughtfully amazing variety of cheese, cured meats, and wines, they support local food growers and artisans, such as the aforementioned up-and-coming Boulder chocolatier, Nathan Miller.
You know why I think you should go to Cured? Because it is an independently owned shop specializing in something you’re sure to need to finish the meal you have planned- cheese, cured meat, olive oil, vinegar, jams, crackers, specialty salts, fresh locally grown veggies, wine, and chocolate.
You know why I really think you should go to cured? Because you can walk out of there with your entire dinner- meats, cheeses, bread, wines, olive oil, vinegar, lettuce, lots of other local veggies… sounds like a great meal to me for late nights or simply “I don’t feel like cooking” nights. Might actually be most nights for a number of my friends.
Anyway- Welcome, Cured, to downtown Boulder. Can’t wait to visit with you on food tours!