Best Restaurant Trend - 2000
The consumption of cheese is, of course, one of the great perks of being human, but despite its pure and wide-ranging wonderfulness -- especially in concert with some harmonizing species of fruit, and particularly at the end of a meal -- cheese as dessert course was a rarity in American restaurants for several years. But over the past decade the continuing influence of Alice Waters and her ethos of honoring the locally raised has been felt not only in the realm of bread-baking and foie gras-raising, but in cheese-making too. Nowadays, many a trendy restaurant supplements its crème brûlée and tarte Tatin with a selection of cheeses, many of them created with tender, loving care by small producers up in the wine country. Paired with dates or almonds or a nice glass of port, cheese is a course worth following.