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This might not be best for your after-lunch breath, but man is it worth it.

Just go in here where the uh, sandwich board is, and say “Gimme a Stinking Bishop.”


They won’t toss you out. Rebecca Gould, who’s an expert in cheeses, will probably say “Good choice.”

Because the fact is this is Venissimo (871 G Street, downtown, 619-358-9081, also other branches) where they want you to try as many of their 100 or so cheeses as possible.


Cheeses galore

I haven’t heard of, oh 96 of them.


Customer, Armond, waits for his cacciocavallo di bufala cheese

So to get us going they have a take-out lunch deal, where for $6.50 you can get a sandwich with any cheese inside, plus fruit, like an apple or grapes. For $1 more they’ll add a meat like prosciutto or finocchiona (first time I’ve heard of this too. Has a fennel flavor), and for 50 cents more they’ll toast the whole thing up.

Which you just know will bring out the best (worst?) in the stinking bishop, an English cheese, turns out.


Like beer and wine labels, cheese labels become collectors' items

Yes, Rebecca says, you could say stinking bishop smells like old socks. “Like a limburger, less mushroomy than a camembert, more yeasty, fruity, and with pear juice…”

Hmm. Starting to sound tempting. This is like talking to a wine expert, and in a way, we’re talking same level of expertise. Mouth, nose, history, all that good stuff.

And, says Rebecca, if you don’t like it gloopy, try a Dutch one like balarina goat gouda. “It’s chunky, dry, tangy, but a little bit nutty and sweet.”

Wow, that, plus (free) grapes…mebbe add a coffee.


Problem: no tables and chairs here. So where to eat it? Go Pannikin, or The Village (ex Java Joe’s), both nearby. Buy a coffee and they shouldn’t mind if you munch a bring-in. Or bring a munch-in.

Except, if you’re munching stinking bishop, better stay downwind.

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