L'Espalier's Cheese Tuesday - No Cows Allowed
Every year, L'Espalier does a No Cows Allowed version of Cheese Tuesday, where they highlight cheeses made of goat, sheep, and buffalo milk.
I began with a Hemingway Daiquiri, a mix of Bully Boy White Rum, lime, grapefruit, Maraschino liqueur, and simple syrup; perfectly light and summery without being overly sweet.
The first course paired a Riesling-heavy wine, 2014 Mayer am Pfarrplatz, a Gemischter Satz from Austria, with Vermont Creamery Bijou with new beets, native strawberries, and raspberry vinaigrette.
As amazing as that first course was, it was surpassed by the second: hay roasted asparagus with a coddled egg, hazelnut, Maine lobster, and Pecorino Fior di Noce. This was paired expertly with 2012 Chateau Tour Leognan from Pessac-Leognan.
The only red of the evening, 2010 Tolani "Al Passo" from Toscana, was paired well with Long Island duck breast with lemongrass, plum glaze, and Sparrow Arc Farm Hakurei turnip.
The cheese course was paired with 2010 Contratto, an extra brut from Lombardia.
The first three cheeses were all ones I had at least a passing familiarity with. We started with Lakes Edge, a goat's milk cheese from Blue Ledge Farm in Salisbury, Vermont. Then it was on to Fior di Noce, a sheep's milk cheese from Tuscany. To finish out the first third of the cheese plate, we had Summer Snow, a sheep's milk cheese from Woodcock Farm in Weston, Vermont.
Robiola Castagna, a goat's milk cheese from Piedmont, Italy, was next, followed by Danby, also a goat's milk cheese, but from Consider Bardwell Farm in Vermont. Camembert di Bufala completed the middle third of the cheese plate.
The only Spanish cheese of the night began the final third: Cuidad di Sansuena, made of sheep's milk. It was followed by Fiacco di Capra, a goat's milk cheese from Lombardy, Italy, and Bleu de Basque, a sheep's milk cheese from Pays Basque, France.
Awesome friends decided I had to share dessert, so I had a bit of the Chocolate Covered Cheery pictured above: black cherries with chocolate tapioca and coconut-cherry sorbet. I ordered a bit of Anniversary Blend tea to go with it, and it was the best possible way to end the meal.