We pause for breaking news.
Regular readers will recall the recent report by Ross Eisenbrey, one of our Senior France Correspondents, on Fleur de Lys in Gruyères, Switzerland, home of an ethereal Civet de Chevereuil, or venison stew as it is known here in the États-Unis d’Amérique. As the restaurant was in Gruyères, we noted in passing the dominance of Gruyere in international cheese competitions.
Well, move over Gruyere. And, well … first, you might want to sit down if you’re from France and still haven’t gotten over the Judgment of Paris, in which a California Chardonnay (a 1973 Chateau Montelena by Mike Grgich) defeated the best French wines in a blind tasting. The 2019 international cheese competition was won by Rogue River Blue Cheese from Rogue Creamery in Oregon — the first such win by an American cheese in all of human history. The French didn’t rank in the top seven. (That said, I’d just as soon have a nice ripe camembert as just about anything that didn’t start out as part of a pig.)
Mike Grgich, by the way, is a wonderful person. He made his way through the Iron Curtain in 1954(!) with $32 in his shoe. After time in a couple of internment camps, Mr .Grgich made his way into Napa Valley and history. In 1977 he started his own vineyard. If you go to Napa, do not, repeat, do not skip Grgich Hills. And if you have a really special occasion, celebrate with a bottle of Grgich Hills chardonnay or cabernet sauvignon or whatever else you may fancy.
And celebrate American exceptionalism by going out and buying some blue cheese from Rogue Creamery.
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