M. Fromage is two years old!
Today is the two year anniversary of M. Fromage. What started out as a distinctly amateurish pursuit in the English sense of the word (unprofessional and a bit slapdash) has evolved into an endeavor of an amateur in the French sense of the word (a lover of a thing).
In the past two years, I’ve written 64 blog posts, visited at least a dozen fromageries across France and the US, attended three different cheese salons (including the Salon du Fromage in Paris as a member of the press!), been interviewed on French radio and for the daily newspaper Le Parisien, and met some of the loveliest people you could ever want meet whose experience and encouragement have inspired me.
That part was easy. Now comes the interesting bit.
This past winter I said that I wanted to get serious. For in the back of my mind, I had started to contemplate a more serious professional change, namely working in the cheese industry. I know though that passion in itself is not sufficient to make this sort of change successfully. Success requires hard work and dedication. Being serious with the blog was the first step, and I’ve proven to myself I can muster the level of effort. Now I need experience.
To this end, I’ve enrolled in two week-long intensive training programs conducted by the Academie Opus Caseus. The program is supervised by Sue Sturman, whom I met earlier this year, and Laurent Mons of the renowned Mons family of affineurs in St-Haon-le-Châtel, not far from Lyon. The first week is Essential Foundations of Cheese. The second is Affinage, the aging of cheese. Although Mons offers these programs in French (and is, by the way, one of the creators of the training programs offered by the French national association of cheesemongers), the timing of the English programs worked out better. I’m sure that I’ll have the opportunity to learn the French terminology, too.
Following this program, I will be seeking an internship (what the French call a “stage”) in one of Paris’ cheese shops. I’m excited to say that have spoken to someone about this already and think I’ve locked up an opportunity for October!
So forward we go. I’m not exactly sure where I’ll end up, but I’m okay with that. We’ll see where I am when I turn 3.