Oct. 9 is National Moldy Cheese Day (but you knew that, didn’t you?), so let’s celebrate the grey-, blue- and green-tinged “moldy” cheeses that we adore. Certainly not the red or brown cheese molds that shout “toss me!” from the back of your fridge, we’re talking the likes of Point Reyes and Maytag blue, Roquefort, Stilton, gorgonzola, brie and camembert. Chefs honor them in a host of ways, including and beyond the classic cheese plate. Here are a few outstanding exemplars.
You can order a darn-fine Wisconsin cheese plate at Milwaukee Chophouse in this downtown Art Deco landmark hotel, but for pure moldy-cheese indulgence try a prime-cut, boneless rib-eye with a buttermilk-blue cheese crust. Have it with the timeless Wedge, iceberg lettuce ladled with blue cheese dressing and studded with buttermilk-blue cheese, bacon lardons, tomato and egg.
If you want your moldies in the classic French tradition of a savory finish apres le plat, fly to 10-counter-seat Le Comptoir in this 1920s-vintage Koreatown hotel in the City of Angels. It will follow seven prix fixe courses prepared before your eyes by French Laundry alum Gary Menes, showcasing organic veggies grown in a Long Beach garden.
Housed in a historic bank lobby, Bambara serves New American fare in an unfussy atmosphere. Among small plates is the signature Blue Cheese House-Cut Potato Chips. Local-ish cheeses may include a moldy along with tartufo salami and condiments. Fuji Apple Salad features Rogue Creamery Smoky Blue Cheese.
Huzzahs for that small-inn staple, the wine and cheese evening social. It’s done six evenings a week at this Reynolds Square Southern charmer, and a moldy delight or two are definitely in the rotation. Hang around for the warm, baked cookies, which come out shortly thereafter. Room service can also deliver a cheese platter from The Olde Pink House next door.