It started last Thursday, innocently enough. We had a welcome back in the New Year get together with the client lead of my team and his wife. They live in France in a beautiful house with a great view of the countryside in a cute little village where the houses are all of stone and covered in ivy and flowers in the summertime.

On this night it was bitterly cold though so the pool and the patio went unused as we chose to gather around the wood stove with our champagne instead. The slightest smell of burning wood was in the air and the lighting was comforting and inviting.

After a New Year's toast, all eyes turned to the feast spread on the tables. There were all kinds of finger sandwiches, soups, quiche and fruit. The dessert spread included two kinds of chocolate mousse, cakes and mini chocolate eclairs and truffles. All that looked delicious but what really grabbed my attention was the spread of cheese. I made a beeline for the display and along with a coworker committed to sampling each and every one. There was blue cheese, Swiss cheese, French cheese and German cheese. Hard, soft, rotten and mild. I tried them all paired with the delicious bread from all over this region and wasn't dissappointed. They were so delicious.

After gorging on cheese, I waddled home and with a big smile on my face drifted off to sleep, glad to have treated myself to this special indulgence - a once a year kind of treat, or so I thought. No sooner did I arrive at work on Friday when I received an invitation in my inbox. Lunch with left over goodies from the dinner, including... the leftover cheese! Well, it couldn't hurt if I had a little more, right? I mean, how often are you able to have this fantastic array of delicious cheese?

So came and went round 2. On Friday, M. arrived and I was telling him about all these wonderful cheeses and he had a great idea! Let's drive over to France and get some cheese to bring to his parents for dinner. Gulp. Well, it would be a nice thing to bring some over to share, wouldn't it? So we got some hard pecorino type cheese at the Basel market and then drove over to France for some more variety.

We had cheese for a pre-dinner snack and cheese for dessert but there was still more left over! So even on Sunday morning we had more cheese. You can't let food go to waste after all. I'm sure I gained 10 lbs this weekend. But oh it was so good!

Posted from Basel


Expat Traveler said...

I think the large amount of walking you do in Basel is supposed to even out the over eating/indulging. I actually lost weight while I was living there. But as I sit here in Vancouver, I'm so envious of your cheese selection.

James said...

I tell ya...since moving to Germany I have lost a fair amount of weight. Not that I was obese before, but my exercise regiment was lacking some days.....well, ok, everyday. I now walk everywhere in Duesseldorf. I eat a lot less food than I did in San Francisco. So, bam.....I am losing weight. I love it! I love cheese and the large variety here in Europe can be overwhelming to me right now, but I have grand plans to learn them all. :) I am glad you are enjoying your new home in Europe! More soon....

christina said...

I walk everywhere too but the cheese pounds will not budge! Our whole family are huge cheese eaters - there's just nothing better.

Kirk said...

If you like cheese, there's a little (but evidently quite famous in culinary circles) cheese shop in the town of Vieux-Ferrette in the Alsace that is definitely worth a visit. We went there this spring: http://expatter.blogspot.com/2005/03/only-in-france.html