I recently went to a local cheese shop, and was puzzled to find out that supposedly expensive imported cheeses where not that much more expensive than the ordinary stuff you get at the supermarket. I have grown to love XXX sharp cheddar, and was astonished to discover the interesting prices.
1) domestic brands (Tillamook, Kraft, Joseph's, etc.) at the local supermarket (Andronico’s), the prices where $4 for 8 oz, $6 for 12 oz, and $7 for 1 lb., of various brands.
2) local gourmet shop (Country Cheese), I found several brands of genuine cheddar from England and Ireland for $9-10 per lb.
Not surprisingly, the taste difference was dramatic. If you have never tasted genuine cheddar from England, you are really missing out on something great.
Question: I want someone who is familiar with the cost/pricing of cheese to explain this to me. You can get a superior imported cheese for only a couple of bucks per pound? I have worked in retail (kitchenware) before, and other assorted food service jobs (but never produce or supermarket), but this one baffles me.
I live in the SF-bay area. We have Laura Chenel, Cowgirl Creamery, Cheese Board Collective, etc. So, maybe I am jaded for good cheese, and there might be an obvious answer I cannot see. Still, I am curious.