Citarella Cheese

There are few food places that I frequent more in the Hamptons than Citarella. It’s an amazing place. The food is just incredible. Everything from their Tuscan chicken, to their lentil salad, to their curry chicken wraps are just such a pleasure. I go there almost every day of the workweek, as the current Dan’s Papers office is right next door.

But I have a confession to make, I also go there for the free cheese.

The Citarella in Bridgehampton offers free cheese samples, and I inhumanely sample them at will—and I’ve never bought a block of cheese from the store. The cheese at Citarella is so good that it is almost criminal. I’ll take a sample of Grana Padano, Extra-Aged Gouda (four years), Applewood Cheddar or Emmentaler. They offer up the free samples so whenever I need to get a cup of coffee or go buy lunch, I’ll shamelessly walk over to the cheese area, take a sample, thank the nice Green lady who works in the cheese area, and then be on my way. [expand]

But I’m ashamed of myself. I’m ashamed to just take the cheese and not buy it, because I honestly really do love it. So today, is my official apology, and although I spend a good portion of money already at this store, today is the day that I will actually purchase cheese to take home with me and eat like a normal human being. But I don’t know if I’ll be able to resist the temptation to try out what new cheese they are offering up to their customers tomorrow or the next day, or the next. It’s just so good. Once it hits your lips it’s so good.

Good lord, do I love Citarella.

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I don’t think I’ve ever been so happy to have the lights go on in my home. My place was like freaking Las Vegas when the lights finally got turned on post Irene. Every room, every electrical outlet was used. I turned the lights on. I turned on the air-conditioner. I took a hot shower. I finally could put food in my refrigerator, and I could go on the Internet. If I could, I would have wrapped myself in an electric blanket while the air-conditioning was turned on. Boy oh boy, just four days without electricity, and I thought I was going to lose it.

Every morning was a freezing cold shower, and every evening I burned my thumb trying to light candles. These are modern world problems. We all have it pretty good.

You really don’t appreciate electricity until you lose it. How the hell did people live for so long without it? What did they do?

Well for one, in just the four days that I was without power, I noticed that the things that occupied my time dramatically changed. For one, I went to bed ridiculously early and was waking up at ridiculously early times. I just felt ready for bed when it got dark outside, which was around 8 p.m. I also played my saxophone, although I’m about as good on the saxophone as Ferris Bueller is on the clarinet. And I also read by candlelight, which is one of the most surprisingly pleasant things to do in the world and I intend on doing it more often.

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If you can’t tell, I’m in a pretty good mood, and the main reason (besides repenting for the sin of constantly enjoying free cheese samples) is the Yankees win against the Red Sox at Fenway in a three game series. Not only did the Yankees win, but they did it minus Alex Rodriguez, and Thursday night’s game showed that the Yankees are a winning machine, a relentless winning machine.

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