Camellia Cheese (in place of Bucheret)

Producer: Redwood Hill Farm 
Country of Origin: United States
Region of Origin: California
Milk Type: Goat
Milk Treatment: Pasteurized
Classification: Soft
Rennet: Vegetable
Rind: Mold Ripened
Shape: Disc
Size: 2.5 ins diameter, 1 in high Weight: 5oz

Located in Northern California’s Sonoma County, Redwood Hill Farm & Creamery is both a goat dairy and a creamery producing specialty dairy products owned and operated by Jennifer Lynn Bice along with fifty-five dedicated employees.

Redwood Hill Farm & Creamery was started by Jennifer’s parents in 1968 while she and her brothers and sisters were raising dairy goats in 4-H. Jennifer and her late husband, Steven Schack took over in 1978.

In addition to a passionate interest in raising and milking dairy goats, Jennifer also continues to develop and maintain an excellent genetics program. The herd has won many National Champions and Top Ten milking awards and produces seed stock for breeders across the US, Canada, and Mexico. Redwood Hill Farm was the first goat dairy in the US to be Certified Humane®, which is considered to be the gold standard in third-party certification for humane animal treatment. Redwood Hill Farm & Creamery is committed to sustainability. They have recently installed solar energy systems, which offset 100% of the projected energy needs of the creamery and the farm.

Redwood Hill Farm & Creamery’s primary focus is on making natural artisanal cheeses, yogurts, kefir, and other specialty dairy products. Milk for production is sourced from their own dairy along with a number of other carefully selected local goat dairies. The milk is produced from Alpine, Nubian, La Mancha and Saanen dairy goats.

Made in the style of a Camembert, from pasteurized goat’s milk, Camellia is named after one of Redwood Hill Farm’s favorite does. During production, the curd is handled very gently to allow for the retention of as much moisture as possible. The cheese is allowed to drain naturally before being unmolded.

After production, the young Camellia are placed in a drying room before being transferred to maturing rooms where they will remain for two or three weeks.
Just after aging, Camellia has a mild, buttery flavor and a slight tang. It also has a bone-white color and a firm texture. Let it age longer (five weeks), the cheese develops more intense, complex flavors with notes of earth, mushrooms and truffles. At about six to eight weeks of age, the texture softens, becoming yielding and unctuous.

Pairings: Camellia pairs well with Hard Cider, dry Rose, Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Noir wines.

Sake: General Knowledge


This article is about the beverage. For other uses, see Sake (disambiguation).

Sake (/ˈsɑːk/ or /ˈsɑːki/)[1][2] is an alcoholic beverage of Japanese origin that is made from fermented rice. It may also be spelled saké.

In the Japanese language, the word sake refers to Japanese liquor, while the beverage called sake in English is termed nihonshu (日本酒, “Japanese liquor”).

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Mezcal: General Knowledge


  Various views of a bottle of mezcal. The worm can be seen in the middle image, at the bottom of the bottle.

Mezcal, or mescal, is a distilled alcoholic beverage made from the maguey plant (a form of agaveAgave americana) native to Mexico. The word mezcal comes from Nahuatl mexcalli[meʃ’kalːi] metl [met͡ɬ] and ixcalli [iʃ’kalːi] which means “oven-cooked agave”.[1]

The maguey grows in many parts of Mexico, though most mezcal is made in Oaxaca.[2] There is a saying attributed to Oaxaca regarding the drink: “para todo mal, mezcal, y para todo bien también” (“for everything bad, mezcal, and for everything good, as well”).[3][4]

It is unclear whether distilled drinks were produced in Mexico before the Spanish Conquest.[5] The Spaniards were introduced to native fermented drinks such as pulque, also made from the maguey plant. Soon the conquistadors began experimenting with the maguey plant to find a way to make a distillable fermented mash. The result was mezcal.[6]

Today, mezcal is still made from the heart of the maguey plant, called the “piña”, much the same way it was 200 years ago, in most places.[3][7] In Mexico, mezcal is generally consumed straight and has a strong smoky flavor.[7] Though mezcal is not as popular as tequila (a mezcal made specifically from the blue agave in select regions of the country), Mexico does export the product, mostly to Japan and the United States, and exports are growing.[8]

Despite the similar name, mezcal does not contain mescaline or other psychedelic substances.[9]

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Tequila: General Knowledge


This article is about the alcoholic beverage. For other uses, see Tequila (disambiguation).
  Tequilas of various styles

Tequila (Spanish pronunciation: [teˈkila]) is a distilled beverage made from the blue agave plant, primarily in the area surrounding the city of Tequila, 65 kilometres (40 mi) northwest of Guadalajara, and in the highlands (Los Altos) of the western Mexican state of Jalisco.

The blue volcanic soil in the surrounding region is particularly well suited to the growing of the blue agave, and more than 300 million of the plants are harvested there each year.[1] Agave tequila grows differently depending on the region. Blue agaves grown in the highlands region are larger in size and sweeter in aroma and taste. Agaves harvested in the lowlands, on the other hand, have a more herbaceous fragrance and flavor.[2]

Mexican laws state that tequila can be produced only in the state of Jalisco and limited regions in the states of GuanajuatoMichoacánNayarit, and Tamaulipas.[3] Mexico is granted international right to the word “tequila”.[citation needed] The United States officially recognizes that spirits called “tequila” can only be produced in Mexico, although by agreement bulk amounts can be shipped to be bottled in the U.S.[4]

Tequila is most often made at a 38–40% alcohol content (76–80 proof), but can be produced between 31–55% alcohol content (62–110 proof).[5]

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Vodka: General Knowledge


This article is about the liquor. For other uses, see Vodka (disambiguation).
Vodka (PolishwódkaRussian: водка) is a distilled beverage composed primarily of water and ethanol, sometimes with traces of impurities and flavorings. Vodka is made by the distillation of fermented substances such as grainspotatoes, or sometimes fruits or sugar.

Vodka is a spirit that was virtually unknown in the United States prior to the 1940s.[1] Traditionally prepared vodkas had an alcoholic content of 40% by volume.[citation needed]Today, the standard UkrainianPolishRussian, Latvian and Lithuanian vodkas are 40% alcohol by volume (ABV) or 80 proof. The European Union has established a minimum of 37.5% ABV for any “European vodka” to be named as such.[2][3] Products sold as vodka in the United States must have an alcoholic content of 30% or more.[4] For homemade vodkas and distilled beverages referred to as “moonshine”, see moonshine by country.

Vodka is traditionally drunk neat in the vodka belt countries of Eastern Europe and around the Baltic Sea. It is also commonly used in cocktails and mixed drinks, such as theBloody MaryScrewdriverSex on the BeachMoscow MuleWhite RussianBlack Russianvodka tonic, and in a vodka martini.

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Varietal Characteristics of Some Common Wines

Varietal Characteristics of Common Wines

In order to appreciate wine, it’s essential to understand the characteristics different grapes offer and how those characteristics should be expressed in wines. Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Zinfandel are all red grapes, but as wines their personalities are quite different. Even when grown in different appellations and vinified using different techniques, a varietal wine always displays certain qualities, which are inherent in the grape’s personality. Muscat should always be spicy, Sauvignon Blanc a touch herbal. Zinfandel is zesty, with pepper and wild berry flavors. Cabernet Sauvignon is marked by plum, currant and black cherry flavors and firm tannins. Understanding what a grape should be as a wine is fundamental, and knowing what a grape can achieve at its greatest is the essence of fine-wine appreciation.

In Europe, the finest wines are known primarily by geographic appellation (although this is changing; witness the occasional French and Italian varietals). Elsewhere, however—as in America, Australia, South Africa and New Zealand—most wines are labeled by their varietal names; even, sometimes, by grape combinations (Cabernet-Shiraz, for example). To a large extent, this is because in the United States, the process of sorting out which grapes grow best in which appellations is ongoing and Americans were first introduced to fine wine by varietal name. In Europe, with a longer history for matching grape types to soil and climate, the research is more conclusive: Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, for instance, are the major grapes of Burgundy. Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Malbec and Petite Verdot are the red grapes of Bordeaux. Syrah dominates northern Rhône reds. Barolo and Barbaresco are both made of Nebbiolo, but the different appellations produce different styles of wine. In Tuscany, Sangiovese provides the backbone of Chianti. A different clone of Sangiovese is used for Brunello di Montalcino.

As a result, Europeans are used to wines with regional names.

In time, the New World’s appellation system may well evolve into one more like Europe’s. Already California appellations such as Carneros and Santa Maria Valley are becoming synonymous with Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, Oregon’s Willamette Valley is known for Pinot Noir and Australia’s Hunter Valley for Shiraz; back in California, Rutherford, Oakville and the Stags Leap District are all associated with Cabernet-based red table wines. Wineries with vested financial interests in these appellations and the marketing clout to emphasize the distinctive features of the wines grown in these areas will determine how the appellation system evolves and whether specific wine styles emerge. The appellations themselves will also determine which grapes excel and deserve special recognition.

Following are descriptions of the most commonly used Vitis vinifera grapes. American wine is also made from native Vitis labrusca, especially the Concord grape. For definitions of wine-making terms mentioned, please see the glossary. For information about wine growing regions mentioned, please see the country descriptions.

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A Glossary of Beef Finishing

A Glossary of Beef Finishing

All-Natural: This term sounds great, but may be the most confusing of all.
According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), a ‘natural’
or ‘all-natural’ labeling on meat means that it has been “minimally processed
and contains no artificial ingredients.” However, a natural label does not
prohibit the use of growth-promoting hormones or antibiotics.

Grain-fed/Corn-fed: Most meat found in supermarkets and restaurants
across the country are fed a diet of specially formulated feed, based on corn
or other grains. This diet is typical in large scale beef production and speeds
up the growth and fat distribution (marbling) of the beef. Cows are grasseaters
by nature, and an intense grain diet can be difficult on their digestive
systems, often requiring antibiotics to be administered on a large scale.

Grass-fed: According to the American Grassfed Association (AGA)’s 100%
Grass-fed Ruminant Program, a grass-fed cow must eat only herbaceous
plants and/or mother’s milk during its entire life cycle. The natural diet of
cattle, grass is lower in saturated fats and higher in essential nutrients, like
omega 3-fatty acids and vitamin E, creating a healthier, leaner product.
Grassfed beef tends to have a meatier flavor and a cleaner finish. To be
certified by the AGA, animals must not be given any antibiotics or hormones.

Grain-finished: This term refers to feeding pastured animals a grain diet
before slaughter to provide a more marbled finish in the end.