Teaching a Baby to Walk–Er, Crack

Cheesemongering isn’t exactly the most common profession. In other words, there aren’t that many of us.

It’s an exciting occasion when a new one comes along. But more often than not, you have to create cheesemongers; mold them and shape them, as it were.

We just got a new baby cheesemonger, as we like to call them when they’re still young to the field and learning everything.

We’ve been training our new baby cheesemonger this week, and that involves a lot of firsts.

One of today’s lessons was an introduction to cracking an 80-some-pound wheel of Parmigiano Reggiano.

Now I’ve posted videos before of cheesemongers cracking parm and Grana Padano. It’s cool to see that, but it’s even cooler to see someone experiencing this labor for the first time. (A labor of love–of cheese–of course.)

So today, we get to relive baby-cheesemonger Spencer’s first Reggiano-cracking lesson, courtesy of the wonderful (grown-up cheesemonger) Alicia.


And in case you wondered, the milestone-type initiation rites for a baby cheesemonger to become a grown-up cheesemonger include cracking Reggiano, cutting a 180-pound wheel of Emmentaler, and breaking down a 60-pound wheel of clothbound cheddar. There’s a lot more to it, but those are some of the most important techniques to master.

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