Well, here we are again. It's St. Patrick's Day. And while all of America is going mad, dying their beers and their rivers green, my thoughts are as usual...what to eat? And this year I have to admit, I have no grand plans. Sure I'll have a sneaky pint of Guinness later, but this year, I've been pretty lame and have no big Irish meal planned. In fact, what I'd really like is a bag of Taytos and a Galaxy Bar. But wait, then I thought, what's the fallback food of the picnic planner? Yes I could gladly live on cheese and crackers for the next millennium. Perhaps it's not the first thing you think of when you think of Ireland, but be assured Ireland has cheeses every bit as lovely as those in France, Spain or anywhere else.
Being very much a friend of cheese, where else could I turn but Vancouver's fabulous Les Amis du Fromage. I happily left the shop yesterday with two fine cheeses. Hailing from County Tipperary, Cashel Blue has all the tanginess of a blue cheese but I find it more creamy and rich. Buttery, even. Coolea, from Cork is a new one to me. It's a semi-hard cheese, almost like a gouda, but to me it seems nuttier, almost like a Comté.
And this being St. Patrick's Day, it only seems right to top it off with a small glass of whisky. Here's wishing that the luck of the Irish follows you all year long! And to all my friends back in Ireland, a very special good wish for you.