It's Easy Being Cheesy
It isn’t difficult to find good cheese, like gouda, provolone and emmentaler, in Edmonton. It’s a wee bit more difficult to find unusual fromage, like Polish hunter’s cheese and Friuliano, but if you know where to look (think the Polish Centre and Italian Centre Shop), it is not the quest for the Holy Grail. However, if you’ve a yen for something truly unique and extraordinary, look no further than Paddy’s International Cheese Market and Everything Cheese.
Paddy’s International Cheese Market (12509 102 Ave.) Paddy’s is a treasure trove of cheese. The staff is immensely knowledgeable about the world of curds and whey and will provide samples if you are so inclined. A few cold cuts and dips are available, but cheese is clearly Paddy’s strength. An innumerable variety spans multiple continents, time zones and hemispheres. Try the Guinness-soaked marble or a sultry Lancashire for a taste of the British Isles or a creamy, nutty Samsoe for a hint of Denmark. Then nip around the corner to the Wine Cellar to complete your wine and cheese night.
Everything Cheese (14912 45 Ave.) It takes an a priori familiarity with convoluted suburban roads to find Everything Cheese, but it’s everything one could ask for in a cheese shop. The sleek interior boasts a futuristic cheese cooler as well as chutneys, preserves and crackers to complete the cheese-eating experience. Everything Cheese is one of a select few purveyors of Jacek Chocolates; be sure to pick up a few while you’re in the neighbourhood. Don’t hesitate to ask the staff about the many varieties of cheese that line said cooler. Umbriaco al Prosecco, which hails from the Veneto region of Italy and literally means “drunk on Prosecco,” is a delicate cheese aged in the leaves of Prosecco grapes. Valdeon is not for the faint of heart, for this goat’s milk blue cheese from Spain brings new meaning to the term “assertive.” When you’re done, pop next door to Secret Sweets for a snickerdoodle.