The State of Cheese in PHX/Scottsdale

What a sad story…a town full of foodies…great restaurants, wine bars and brew pubs…but not one proper cheese shop.  Yes, they have Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s and thier little local gourmet off shoot of their supermarket, AJ’s…but alas…no place sells cut to order, high-end..good quality cheese.  Now, some of you would say…”Why don’t you guys open one?”  And it has crossed our minds…we even found a little space next door to one of our favorite wine shops.   But what is the point of opening a shop if we are going to be here less than a year or so?  I just don’t see how pouring our heart and sou (and savings) into a shop before we head back to the Midwest to start the farm.  I was thinking that maybe we could run a web-based business out of the house…I’m still mulling that one over.

It’s not that the local shops don’t carry cheese…they do.  Whole Foods has thier standard fare…albeit over-priced in my opinion..and even the local Fry’s Supermarket carries Humbolt Fog…but it’s all pre-cut and packaged.  You don’t know where it really came from…or when it arrived.  There isn’t a cheesemonger there to guide you, make suggestions or prevent you from doing something you’d regret.  It’s a lonely cheese experience.

Now, some locals like Cheuvront Restaurant and Wine Bar.  I was not overly impressed.  The cheese looked old and some had an off flavor I just couldn’t put my finger on.  The staff were nice, but the one person I spoke to did not really have a deep knowledge of the cheeses on hand.  I hope to give them another shot…maybe it was an off day.  Folks around here tend to sing the praises of the frommagier there…so..I’ll give it another whirl….because they do have some winners on their cheese list.

So for now…we rely Valley Wine and Cheese in Henderson, NV for our fix..make sure we buy enough to last us a while b/c it’s a 4 hour drive (on the way to Vegas…that’s a whole other post)

From their website:

Valley Cheese and Wine is the premier specialty wine and food store in the Las Vegas valley. Founded in July 2006 by Bob Howald and Kristin Sande, Valley Cheese and Wine features flavorful, artisanal products that are produced in small quantities. Every item we carry is hand-selected with taste in mind, representing the world’s finest. At Valley Cheese and Wine you will find include hard-to-find wines, artisan cheese, charcuterie, specialty dry goods and wine accessories.

“We seek out the very best and are committed to promoting these labors of love,” says Kristin “and we extend the care that goes into the making of each product by offering excellent service to each customer.”

Cheeses and meats are cut to order to insure optimum quality. We offer educational classes and free tastings on a regular basis. Consider Bob and Kristin’s expertise as your passport to a world of tasty and authentic food and wine.

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