[May 2021] A hobby class teacher told us that a cheese market would be held in the Chiswick district in western London, so we went there.
The classroom is also in this Chiswick, but for the past year and a half I’ve been meeting everyone online only.
The classroom has been open since mid-May, but it’s still a hassle due to the Covid restrictions in order to keep the social distancing.
Chiswick is one of London’s most renowned areas to live in, and despite the good environment, it’s not so pretentious and a lot of middle-class families with children live there.
There are also many restaurants and cafes.
The reason for the cheese market here is that Chiswick was historically known as “Cheesewick”.
Apparently it is the old word meaning cheese farm.
And there is a history that a big cheese market was held every year until the 18th century.
Now, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, many cheese makers are in trouble because the restaurant has been closed for a long time.
With the goal of supporting cheese makers and revitalising the town, this event was organised by local women who love cooking.
This group called “Cookbook Kitchen” has held cookbook festivals in Chiswick in the past.
On the day, when we left our house, it was raining, and we realised that the underground train we were planning to take was out of service.
So I was so pissed off that I thought we should give up going at one point, but in the end, when we arrived there by bus, the weather had changed to the better and sun was shining.
The cheese market was held in a corner of the main street in the centre of the town.
It wasn’t that big, and there were about 20 tents selling cheese.
As a measure against Covid, the one-way system was operated.
And my hands were disinfected at the entrance, and they checked if we had the face mask on.
For this reason, we had to queue for a while to enter the site.
Also at each tent we had to queue to prevent people from gathering together.
We ended up buying Parmigiano Reggiano chunks and goat blue cheese from an Italian cheese tent, Brie and creamy Gorgonzola-style blue cheese from a French cheese tent.
We also bought garlic-flavored salami sold at the French tent.
It wasn’t cheap at around £ 40 in total, but everything we bought was a big hit.
This cheese market will be held on the 3rd Sunday of every month from now on, so we have to go and get them again.
It would have been better if this market could be expanded a little further, with tables and chairs, with wine tents so that people could taste cheese and relax.
Perhaps because of the pandemic, that was not possible.
Later, I looked at the local newspaper and found that the number of people visiting the market on that day was about 5,500, and each cheese shop sold a lot and had a great day.
I didn’t know it on the spot, but apparently there was a Scottish cheese specialty store that had come here driving for 10 hours all the way.
I hope that such a market will continue to grow in the future.
Cheese is a great enemy of my weight, though…