In Amsterdam, I Got Hooked

This from a good friend . . .

Amsterdam. Damn! Just a short visit and I left with this monkey on my back. A taste for that rich aroma and flavor that is all too easy to acquire throughout that ancient town. Strolling through that reputed "district" you tantalized me with your promises of earthy delights. I succumbed. Now back in the good old US of A I save up for a trip to my secret source to get a hit of that old stinky that you chained me to forever. Amsterdam. Damn. 

[Basta! We must interrupt. If you are thinking what we are thinking, this guy has taken up the wacky snacky of choice in the old cheese city. But, in fact, he is merely speaking about his acquired taste for certain culinary treats from that old Flemish town. Now to continue the tale . . .]

On a shopping trip on our visit to Amsterdam in the beautiful Jordaan neighborhood we came across Caulils at Haarlemmerstraat 115.

Per an internet food critic “Caulils delicatessen & catering is the address in Amsterdam for the conscious connoisseur and stands for pure, refined and responsible. The selection of products and dishes are composed with passion and taste and a true love and passion for food. The store sells fantastic raw-milk cheeses, various meats and unique wines.”

It was there that I got hooked. The drug of choice in this instance, Gouda cheese. Not just your ordinary young Gouda, but aged. The older the better. Grainy, slightly sweet with a hint of caramel yet sharp, a deep lingering finish. The hospitable cheesemonger there was most gracious, offering samples freely. We even tried a farm house variety made in rare old wooden molds. Very rustic and grassy.

Those Goudas and some other rare soft creamy cheeses, a little Charcuterie, and we had a picnic on our hands. But, what's a picnic without a good knife? Fortunately, Coulils carries a nice selection of the de rigueur folding picnic knife from Opinel, an old time French maker. Click here to go to their romantic website.

Back home in New Jersey we have discovered the cheese shop at the Wine Library in Springfield, New Jersey. Just got back home with some Goudas to replenish the stash, a 5 year old and an XO. 

Signing off now. Must enjoy.

PS   Travelling back from Amsterdam, besides our taste for their great cheeses, we brought home a bottle of Bols Corenwyn Geniver, a 6 year old cask aged specialty Genever. 

Unfortunately, it is not distributed in the United States. The bottle we brought back home is now empty. Maybe that means another trip to The Netherlands?

While we’re on Genever we also found a very fancy little shop in Amsterdam H.P. de Vreng en Zonen, a company started in 1710. There we purchased a small bottle of 15 year old, called Gelagerde Genever. There’s a little left, so all hope is not lost. CLICK here to go to their website and be astounded by the range of very rare liqueurs and fancy gift bottles.

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