Ken Hoffman describes the Cheese Shop as the "ruler of the cheese domain south of the Bay Area". From my own limited but very rewarding experience with the place, I'd have to say that it is a prime contender for all of Northern California and perhaps beyond.
A post from Burke & Wells and private conversations with "jaweino", a resident of Carmel, had alerted me to the quality of the store's wares. Last February the Cheese Shop was a purveyor at the opening night event for the Masters of Food and Wine. I had the chance to try only a small number of the 20-30 cheeses offered for tasting, but each was in perfect condition and among the best examples of each type that I've had in this country. Very impressive performance across the range of cheeses available.
Later in the week, I was a volunteer supporting the wine and cheese pairing seminar lead by Ken Torrey of the Cheese Shop and had the opportunity to hear snippets of his talk, and taste more of the blessed cheeses. Again, each had been aged to perfection. Even more impressive was the line-up of wines he chose, including 1970 Ch. Latour, 1997 Domaine Romanee-Conti "La Tache", and 1988 Salon "Mesnil", and other stellar bottles. The wines alone were more than worth the $125 ticket price of the seminar. (http://www.mfandw.com/eagj.html )
I have not been to the retail store yet. Maybe some other 'hounds can say more about it.