my first date with gougeres (and choux pastry in general) was a success, i think!
i ended up using the Zuni recipe, because I have that cookbook and love Judy's descriptions...very easy to follow. i used mostly gruyere with a little bit of pecorino romano (which i diced a bit finer than the gruyere). stirring constantly for several minutes was rather effortful, but quite worth it, i think.
i baked them about an hour before i left my apartment, and crisped them up in the hosts' oven when I arrived...
easy and impressive. next time i may stuff them per the Zuni cookbook suggestion.
thanks for all the advice!