Welcome to the blog of the Rehoboth Beach Cheese Company. Pull up a bar stool and experience our Counter Culture!

I'm Andy Meddick, Owner and President of the Rehoboth Beach Cheese Company. In 2005, I left my corporate I.T. job in Washington DC, to relocate with my spouse's business to the DE beaches. What to do now we live in a state where chicken houses can often outnumber human? Faced with a four hour round trip to the closest decent food market, I opened my first store, Good For You Market, a full service grocery store, focusing on organic, natural, and gourmet foods. In the worst economy since the 1930s, I won Best of Delaware awards three years running. After four years, I decided to simplify the business, re-aligning to focus on what we did best. The result is the Rehoboth Beach Cheese Company. We sell (retail and wholesale) artisan/farmstead cheeses, charcuterie, organic produce,and other specialty foods such as spices and seasonings. We also teach cheese classes, cater, sell online, and consult with other businesses to build their cheese programs.

I've learned much since starting out. For example, staffing was a steep learning curve, and I discovered that a savvy sales and marketing professional lay dormant in an I.T. geek! Systems analysis, business analysis, database design and development, data architecture, web design, specialty cheeses and foods, organic farming, catering, and cooking. What do all these threads have in common? Curiosity! It begets technique, which in turn begets better solutions to commond needs. Why complain about lack of choice, if you're not willing to offer an alternative? Our move, and my business development has taught me to participate in life, and to be ever curious! Enjoy!

Jul 27, 2010

Some days are baking days, some are not.

With, "All apologies" to Amazon Kindle, artists Ashley & Little, and proof in the power of advertising, I can't get the Kindle song out of my mind.

Yesterday I spent the afternoon baking - proofing a blackberry custard tart recipe for the store. The whole time, I hear, "Bake Me Away..." on loop in my head.

I think this was an autonomic reaction to baking with 3 Jack Russell Terriers under my feet - I needed a stress diversion. You can't bake when you're stressed. Ever seen a Pastry Line Cook? "Bake Me Away!"

This blog entry is a shout out to home designers. Sure, I get the, "Be in your kitchen and be able to talk to your guests thing." However, whomever came up with the idea of an open plan kitchen/family room/dining room combo clearly does not use the kitchen 'area' very often! Or they don't have dogs/cats, kids, or curious spouses. File this under, "What we want is not what we need!"

So, before I hang up my apron, home designers, please, either start a new trend for 'private' kitchens, or come up with a solution for us to be able to close them off.
Go ahead, "Bake My Day!"

Jul 25, 2010

Sunday morning. Early. Left the family sleeping in a bed of dog hair and slipped out to grab a coffee, do some food shopping, prep us some juices, check on the web stats and get home before I'm missed, and the heat of the day hits (or at least gets above the 80F it was at 6am). Ughh...

All of this made me realize, despite what y'all may think, being a food market owner is not all world travel and glamour. It's a lot of wild ride, rollercoastin', fun, persistent, put your big boy pants on hard work. The bennies are rare, but one I treasure, I get to food shop without a line! I can slip into our juice bar and juice up some Valencias and make it home with fresh organic O.J.. All just in time for a family breakfast with the goodies I've hit up from the store: produce, bread, milk, eggs, meats, wild Alaskan Sockeye Salmon. Yum!

So, taking a break from the shopping, I check our web stats while (st) catching up on past episodes of The Splendid Table. A few weeks back, host Lynne Rossetto Kasper talked with Anthony Bourdain asking him the question we love as listeners, but if asked ourselves are not quite sure if etiquette, business concerns, or don't pee in your own backyard issues will come back to bite us. Let there be no metaphor that go un-mixed!

So, back to Bourdain. In an uncomfortable, but guilty pleasure question (thank you Splendid Table, good interview!), Chef Bourdain was asked what he thought of his peers? An impressive laundry list! I put my coffee down, thinking, "This is going to be good!" It was. Good, that is. Diplomatic, inciteful, and honest. Considerate. Even appreciative comes to mind. Watered down, no. My favorite was the question, followed by a long pause, regarding the provocative, elegant, impactful, Chef Alice Waters. I believe the words, "Shoot yourself in the foot" were used! The discussion regarded Chef Waters' reply when asked if eating organic produce was feasible for all people, because of the, "Expense?" For example, organic grapes at $6 a lb. versus conventional at $2 a lb less. Don't get me started on "expense" - it's my day off and I need to stay calm! Chef Waters apparent comment was that we could cut down our cell phone minutes and eat better. Wow - you go, there!

My first thought was, "Where are you shopping?" Organic Grapes at $6 a lb. ? Clearly not Good For You Market !

My second thought was that I have a love-hate relationship with my cellphone, but this is not a discussion about the evils of cell phones, nor bashing those who do (love their cell phone). It's about prioritizing resources. Sometimes tact just doesn't cut it!

Thank you Splendid Table. Thank you Chef Bourdain and Chef Waters. Your work, and comments are much appreciated by this food market owner. Good For You, Good For Us All!

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