There’s a lot one could say about the food policies of the Obama Administration, but one of the advantages of a foodie first family has been the spotlighting of American artisanal cheesemakers. As curators of curd news, we await the Inaugural menu announcement with the same enthusiasm as the fashion press waits to learn who Michelle Obama will be wearing tonight. It was Obama’s first inauguration that introduced us to Prairie Fruits Farm in Illinois. This year, with Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) as chair of the Presidential Inaugural Committee, a New York cheesemaker is featured on the Inaugural luncheon menu. Having spent a bit of time exploring New York cheeses this summer, this year’s pick is no stranger to the blog — Cooperstown Cheese Co. and their Toma Celena and Jersey Girl Colby.
The cheeses are part of the dessert course: Hudson Valley Apple Pie with Sour Cream Ice Cream, Aged Cheese and Honey. You can get the recipes for the pie and ice cream on the Inauguration website, and even watch Sen. Schumer and Chef Shannon Shaffer plate the cheese:
The luncheon features two New York wines, Tierce 2009 Finger Lakes Dry Riesling and Bedell Cellars (Long Island) 2009 Merlot, and a controversial “California champagne.” Had the Committee consulted with us, we might have suggested an artisanal cider to complete the menu and spared them the diplomatic blunder, but no such luck. (Hey Mr. President, call us next time?)
For those celebrating at home, CNN’s Eatocracy offered some craft beer suggestions, including honey stouts in the style of the White House’s own home brew. Outside of New York it’ll be hard to find Cooperstown cheeses — we might suggest Sprout Creek Farm Ouray paired with Brewery Ommegang’s Hennepin.
In other Inaugural cheese news, Obama Foodorama reports that a 500-pound Chicago cheesecake will star at the Presidential staff ball.