Hard cheese….


Trolleys are to restaurants what gurneys are to hospitals. They carry the tired, the sick or the dead.  A cheese trolley says more to me about a restaurant than money ever can by which I mean that it is so often the case that the appearance of  one is supposed to act as added value to an already expensive event. I can understand what a cheese trolley is getting at, even though I disagree vehemently with it, whereas money and I are strangers ; be that as it may, but it is money that makes the wheels go round of the overladen tumbrel of half eaten cheese that rumbles  relentlessly towards the linen napped table where the trolley pusher will be able to eclipse the conviviality of contentedly replete diners, happily talking traditional post prandial bollocks, by subjecting each individual to a weird theatre of knife pointing accompanied by a tedious litany of immediately forgotten cheese names. The presence of the trolley will hold the other diners in its thrall, ending conversation while the chosen cheese choosee makes his selection from names that were already familiar to him as he’s forgotten or failed to understand the names recited to him by the cheese pusher who, at the end of this grotesque example of cod gastronomy, will wheel away his trolley, now slightly heavier for the joie de vivre that his cheese knife has excised from each and every diner.

One good cheese in perfect condition is ideal….such as the Mimolette in the picture. Choice, like most things, is bad for you if you have too much of it.

About Food,Photography & France

Photographer and film maker living in France. After a long career in London, my wife and I have settled in the Vendee, where we run residential digital photography courses with a strong gastronomic flavour.
This entry was posted in 2016, Cheese, Digital photography, food, Food and Photography, Food photographer, France, Humour, Mimolette, Uncategorized, Writing and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

31 Responses to Hard cheese….

  1. Mad Dog says:

    I’d settle for one really good cheese at the right temperature, instead of an average selection hastily removed from the fridge.

    • I’ve been offered some dreadful selections in my time:)

      • Mad Dog says:

        I’ve seen someone in a restaurant kitchen cut the mould off a piece of cheese and send it out from the fridge!

      • I was reading a piece from Marco’s autobiography when he saw the cheese trolley about to be taken out to customers and threw every piece of cheese on it against the wall, where it remained stuck as a warning to those who would wheel a cheese trolley with crap cheese upon it! I’m not a fan of Marco’s or other “star” chefs behaviour, but that made me laugh….and write this post:)

      • Mad Dog says:

        Fantastic – I wish I’d done that, but I would have been fired! I have to confess to liking Marco – I once had a girlfriend who worked at Harveys and he wasn’t a complete Nazi. He certainly was an extremely talented chef 🙂

      • No question of his talent and I think he’s mellowed with age. I’ve never agreed with this idea of shouting aggressively at people in order to be respected….you become feared which is disgraceful in a teacher or employer. The sad thing is that the real bastards are truly talented and this behaviour becomes tradition…no different to fagging at school of which everyone disapproves…in fact perfect training to be a young chef trainee:)

      • Mad Dog says:

        You are quite right, the same was true of photography and walking on eggshells is definitely not conducive to creativity. I think the shouting at school has been phased out, so perhaps it will filter through to other lines of work, however, removing the fear doesn’t seem to have done much for respect in society 😦

      • I so agree with you….there is a feeling in my water that I’m not sure we deserve democracy. Current critical choices are being made, in many cases, as in choosing one of the two boat race crews when hardly anyone in the country can row or, indeed, knows anything about rowing 🙂

      • Mad Dog says:

        I think all of them have forgotten how to row on both sides.

      • lot of circular travel…:)

      • Mad Dog says:

        I’ve definitely been there before 😉

      • Sue says:

        You and me both!

  2. Darya says:

    Ah, I do find charm in the cheese trolley, but I agree with you, one well-chosen cheese is often a better option.

  3. Amen to that – ineed to all that!

  4. Nadia says:

    Quite a coincidence. Just had some mimolette for lunch. Love it.

    • It’s an interesting cheese…I only buy it rarely. I think I prefer the young version as the older cheese is a hard bastard. Apparently Louis XIV commissioned French cheese makers to come up with a French cheese to replace Edam. Might be the only sensible thing that he did:)….although Versailles makes up for that lack:)

  5. Never heard of this cheese. We’ll be passing your way early next week so will have to see if we can stop somewhere and buy some!

  6. I think the nostalgia associated with the cheese trolley is also the nostalgia experienced by the cheese floundering on it – “I used to be good once…!
    That said, I do love a thick slice of Mimolette. It’s my dad’s favorite so we usually happen to have it in the cheese drawer 😉

  7. Eha says:

    Milord: you are making me think as usual . . . when I think back at all the times in all corners of the world I have seen ‘the’ cheese trolley roll out – never having given it a thought after both good food and wine and conversation for an hour or three . . . . well I both agree and disagree ’cause, especially in the French countryside, say in the hill towns of Provence above the blasted Riviera, where the choice has been absolutely superb and still memorable . . . chevres made within a radius of ten kms or so . . . ?

  8. Cor I would just be happy with a decent cheese selection, trolley or not. But I get your point. Quantity over quality is rarely the best way to go unless it’s Cadbury’s Creme Eggs. Then bring it on. 🙂

  9. Our Dutch/American household loves a good cheese. We have been known to sneak paper wrapped wedges back from The Netherlands from time to time. A French Mimolette is one of our favorites and luckily we can get it here in Nashville, Tennessee. Your photo is absolutely gorgeous.

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