Awesome Food of the Week: Small Cow Farm Blue Cheese

I started watching Anthony Bourdain’s “No Reservations” yesterday. I know I’m a few years late on this, and yes, I am completely aware that Season 1, Episode 1 of No Reservations does not classify as hot off the press, but hey, let me have this one.

Episode 1 kicks off in Paris – and what better place to start a food show than in Paris, really? Let me say, seeing that man leave a blazing trail of smoke around the city makes me want to have a cigarette myself. I’m no smoker, but there’s something deeply attractive about wandering around ancient Parisian walkways with a pack of Gauloises Blondes.

The show took me back to the time when I visited Paris a few year back and it reminded of what I loved about that city. You guessed it – the food. Man, the French know how to eat. Twenty minutes into the show and I was depressed. I wanted to have what these people posses in such abundant surplus. I wanted to trade Sydney for Paris. I yearned for a food culture. A real one. Still now, I am aching for a local, unpretentious bistro, somewhere where I can be a regular, where I can grow old eating the same dish for 60 years, week in, week out. Somehow, I don’t think the local chicken stir-fry with cashew nuts will meet my requirements. Please, find me a pot of coq au vin made with a proper rooster or suitably old chicken. And also, while you’re there, some potatoes cooked in duck fat and a big glass of red would be great, too.

We have good food in Sydney, but it’s not always around the corner and not always budget-friendly. With food being so trendy here, a good feed almost always comes served with a big dose of celebrity chef ego and a side of the ensuing foodie crowd. Honesty is out the window. Another gripe of mine is the quality of food. In the city, I struggle to find anyone serving chicken that is not intensively farmed and it’s nearly impossible to get grass-fed meat (unless you’re willing to pay through the nose). Has anyone else noticed that pubs and restaurants try to make grain-fed beef sound like it’s a good thing? Are we that susceptible to marketing?

To avoid disappointment, I now mostly eat at home. For a slice of Paris, cheese and wine are a good, easy go-to option. Australian wine is world-class and I’m lucky I have access to a great cheese. Small Cow Farm is a local family business making cheese out in the Southern Highlands and they produce a bloody awesome blue – one of the best I’ve had. The milk is locally sourced from happy, grass-fed cows from Country Valley in Picton (Country Valley also provides the cream that makes the unbelievable @pepesaya butter, and their milk is worth seeking out, too). Get yours from Eveleigh Market on Saturday from Ester Winbourne (@DairyGoodness) and tell her I sent you. I might get a discount next time I’m there.

8 Responses to “Awesome Food of the Week: Small Cow Farm Blue Cheese”

  1. Sandra says:

    Tell me about it! Just got back from Paris and already miss my little cafés and “terrasses”! Ok, the coffee is disgraceful compared to Australia, but I prefer their simplicity and the fact that cafés, bars and bistros are often all rolled into the one place, open from early morning to very late at night. Re. food, didn’t have unforgettable meals in Paris, but made the most out of fresh baguettes with delicious sandwiches :)

  2. Priscila says:

    I couldn’t agree more, about Paris and sadly about Sydney. My only hope is my local pizzeria in the Northern Beaches: Although it has no original conection with this land, it is owened by this passionate italian family who put so much love into their restaurant. The food is simple and fresh and the place is always packed w the same customers – including us :-)
    Priscila´s last [type] ..PYO fruit and vegetable farms

  3. Well said Fouad! It’s getting mighty expensive to eat out in Sydney. And LOL @ the chicken cashew stir fry comment!
    Peter G | Souvlaki For The Soul´s last [type] ..Fish Pie

  4. Louise Reynolds says:

    So true about the French. It’s all about eating well ALL the time, not about blowing a motza on a celeb chef dinner and then eating cheap takeaway or slop in a can the rest of the time. There’s lovely balance with no jerky movements.

  5. Silvia says:

    I’m also a late-comer to Bourdain’s show…I’ve been gorging on the stuff over the past few weeks (lame pun, but hey).

    Great post. You have such flair for writing. Such a pleasure to read.

    Cheese and wine. A dream.

  6. Lindsay says:

    how good is bourdian – I realised a bit that I’ve spent rather quite a bit of the last few years essentially pretending to be him…

  7. Lesley says:

    That fabulous blue cheese is made from fresh milk from cows grazing on the lush grasses of Burrawang, Southern Highlands.

  8. Fouad says:

    Hey Priscila – I love that sense of history in a place. To feel like it’s been there forever. Doing good food, of course! :)

    Hey Peter – Thanks for the comment. My main problem with the cost is that it makes restaurant destinations for an occasion, not an everyday thing which ends up becoming part of the culture. Which I’m sure you’ve seen how natural it feels in your travels. Things like creating food trucks and placing a rigid system around them like we have in Sydney angers me…

    Hey Louise. Exactly! Couldn’t have said it better.

    hey Silvia and Lindsay – thanks for your comments.

    Hi Lesley – love your cheese! LOVE IT!

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