After our business in The City, we drove on up to Napa, where we attended the launch party for Culture magazine, the new magazine for cheese lovers.
This launch party was held in the Oxbow Wine & Cheese Merchant, a combination bar-restaurant-cheese shop, in conjunction with Cheesewhizzes, a cheese-enthusiast group. For our $20, we each got a sampler plate of five Irish cheeses, three of which were featured in the first issue of Culture, plus tokens good for two beers each. Being a non-drinker, I asked for a Diet Coke, only to be told that they didn't have cola drinks, but that I could have a sparkling lemonade instead. I decided to risk the sugary drink. (A subsequent blood sugar check came out normal.) Cheryl had one of their beers.
I'll leave the full report to Cheryl, as she's the one who took the photos and is better-equipped to discuss the food anyway. In general, I found a couple of the cheeses nice, a couple were take-it-or-leave-it, and there was one I think I'd decline if offered again.
We were finishing up our plates when the founders of the magazine took center stage to say a few words, most of which I could not hear, but there was lots of applause for them, their magazine, and all of the people who had made the event happen. Later, Cheryl and I picked four cheeses from the extensive selection they had and bought a small bit of each. As she's leaving on Tuesday, there wasn't much point in stocking up on a lot of cheese, so this will just be enough for a sort of extended sampler. Partially because of this limitation, we did not opt for any of the cheeses that were on the plates today, even though they were on special offer.
Had I been feeling hungrier, after the cheese platter, I might have ordered their macaroni and cheese, which looked good. However, it would appear that last night's dinner was so extensive that it lasted for two days, and I haven't felt at all hungry today. The cheese platter and a lemonade was about enough. We ended up not even using our second drinks tokens before we headed home.
We made excellent time driving back from Napa except for a small slowdown just before the Carquinez Bridge. I opted to take I-780/680/Niles Canyon rather than the more direct route via 80/880; the former is more boring but less subject to unpredictable slowdowns.
Edit, 12 Jan 8:00: Included link to Cheryl's report.