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Apologies for the noticeable dearth of posts lately. Things in my life have been busy and I haven't been able to give this blog proper attention. However, I continue to post a weekly cheese column called Serious Cheese over at Be sure to check there every Tuesday if you're jonesing for cheese-related blog posts (this week my cheese post is hitting today). Thanks, and I look forward to getting back on track here soon!

In the meantime, take a look at this interesting history of cheese someone posted in the forums. (No sources are given, but anyway it makes for entertaining reading and is a somewhat plausible theory. They also link to an interesting-looking site that has videos of cheese-making and other wine & food related things.)


UPDATE: Just installed a widget at the right that lists my most recent posts over at Serious Eats. Check them out!

My Tour of the Caves at Murray's

Head on over to Big Cheese Stories, the Murray's Cheese blog, for a little write-up they did on my recent visit to their underground caves. I had a great time and learned a lot about what sets them apart. It was a great pleasure to meet Murray's affineur Zoe, who showed me around and gave me the low-down on some of the different techniques they use for bringing out the best in the cheeses they sell. If you haven't done so already, leave a comment here for a chance to win two tickets to tour the Murray's caves! (Oh, and don't make fun of my hairnet. The caves have strict sanitary guidelines.)

CurdNerds Standard Contest Rules

To provide fair and equal chance of winning to all CurdNerds readers, the following are the official rules for all contests on


All winners must be 18 years of age or older, unless otherwise stated and/or posted.

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Winners of random email contests will be chosen at random from emails received.

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Winners of all contests will be contacted at the “sender” email address used to enter the contest, and the person receiving and replying to the winner announcement email will be considered the winner unless they specify another person within the reply email as the winner. CurdNerds will mail the contest prize to the address supplied by the recipient of the winner announcement email.

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Claiming of prizes requires an email response to CurdNerds from the winning sender email address within 30 days of being notified of winning at the email address used to enter. Failure to respond shall mean that the winner forfeits the prize. CurdNerds is not required to award elsewhere any prizes forfeited by the chosen winner(s).

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Menu for Hope Winners Announced!

mfh4roundedsmall.jpgCongratulations to Ms. Deborah Szajngarten who won our prize of a $100 gift certificate for Artisanal Cheese. This year's event raised an incredible $91,188 for the U.N. World Food Program. Thank you to Pim Techamuanvivit (Chez Pim) for organizing everything, to everyone who participated and bought raffles, and of course to Artisanal for donating the wonderful prize! Enjoy your cheese, Deborah! Visit Chez Pim for a list of all the winners.

Reminder | Menu for Hope 4 | Win a $100 Gift Certificate for Artisanal Premium Cheese

Reminder that the Menu for Hope campaign ends tomorrow, so make sure you get over to the FirstGiving donation site and purchase some raffle tickets for prize code UE20.

UPDATE: The FirstGiving site seems to still be accepting donations, so if you haven't yet given, now's the time!

Menu for Hope 4: Win a $100 Gift Certificate for Artisanal Premium Cheese

mfh4roundedsmall.jpgEvery year at this time Pim Techamuanvivit of Chez Pim organizes the Menu for Hope campaign, a charity event where food bloggers everywhere help to raise money for the UN World Food Programme. Last year's effort raised a whopping $60,925.12 for the charity, which is dedicated to feeding the world's hungry.

Food bloggers from around the world are offering prizes to be granted via an online raffle. Each $10 donation gives you one virtual raffle ticket, to be allocated towards any prize of your choosing (and there are many). For our part, has teamed up with Artisanal Premium Cheese to offer one lucky raffle winner a $100 gift certificate toward purchases at To enter right away for this incredible prize, go to the FirstGiving donation site The prize code is UE20). For more details, keep reading...

$100 Gift Certificate for Artisanal Premium Cheese

What sets Artisanal Premium Cheese apart is the art of affinage -- an ancient practice by which passionate cheese professionals complete the cheese maker's labor of love,APC_Logo_250.png patiently nurturing each cheese to optimal ripeness and peak flavor. Founded by Chef Terrance Brennan, who revolutionized cheese appreciation in the United States at his New York City restaurants Picholine and Artisanal Fromagerie & Bistro, Artisanal Premium Cheese makes the world's finest cheeses available nationwide as never before. The gift certificate may be used online at towards the purchase of any of their products, including cheeses, cheese gift baskets, and cheese accessories. Residents of and visitors to the New York area can even use it to purchase tickets to cheese classes and tastings. Once again, to enter go to the FirstGiving donation site and use prize code UE20

For a list of all the prizes in the Northeast U.S., visit the Menu for Hope page at Serious Eats. For other regions, see Chez Pim. More details on how to enter available after the jump.

Find Me on

For the past couple of weeks, I've had a few cheeseworthy articles published on Serious Eats, a fantastic food website started at the beginning of this year. The column will be fairly regular, with posts usually coming out every week on Tuesday. Here are links to the three that have already been published:

Lactivism - a brief look at the lactose intolerance spectrum
Cheese Prices Increase 55 Percent Over Last Year - this title is pretty self-explanatory
Grilled Cheese - an article about Halloumi cheese, which is suitable for grilling because it doesn't melt when cooked Updated!

We recently upgraded the software that runs, and everything seems to be running smoothly so far there are still some minor kinks to iron out. If you discover any further problems, or you don't like how any of the new stuff works, please contact us!

Welcome Culinate Readers

Thank you to for featuring us in your Blog Feed section! For those of you who don't know, is a fantastic new food site based in Portland, Oregon that "features articles and essays that address the multitude of intersections between food and the rest of our lives." They have lots of great content, and you should definitely check out the whole site if you've never been.

The return of the forums!

I have been a member of the Artisan Cheesemakers Yahoo Group for a while now, and I just received the following email in my inbox:

From today, January 1, 2007, Artisan_Cheesemakers list will be on permanent hiatus. Messages will no longer be posted, and new members will not be added, but the Archives will remain open for the moment, while I figure out if there's any way (or reason) to save them.

This decision is final. Please don't write me. All good things come to an end, and its always best to move on when they do. Best wishes to those who followed me through this adventure. Good luck to all with your cheesemaking,
Julia Farmer

I've always felt that this was one of more informative, active mailing lists out there, and it's a shame that it's gone. In response, though, we are bringing back the discussion forums to These bulletin boards were up (in a somewhat different form) when we first launched the site, but we took them down due to lack of interest. However, now that the Artisan Cheesemakers list is gone, we thought maybe there would be a place for forums like this. Obviously forums are different than a mailing list, but our hunch is that most people prefer checking discussions online rather than getting a slew of emails in their inbox every day.

So, please go check out the forums, post a topic or two, and definitely let us know if you have any problems, questions or suggestions!

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