Growing a Farmer


Right before I left town, instead of packing, I went to go see Kurt Timmermeister do a reading at Omnivore. I got there super early so after visiting the pet store next door and buying a couple of road treats for Schnitzel, I wandered in about a half hour before the reading was going to start.

No one was there except the woman working the store and one other guy. It was at that moment that I realized I had no idea what Kurt Timmermeister looked like. We have a mutual friends who I know from the ‘80s in ways completely unrelated to cheese so I knew it would be a great time to introduce myself, but I also didn’t want to be that idiot asking every white dude who walked in, “Are you Kurt?”

Compounding this was the fact that though there was a large pile of books, they were standing in front of them so I couldn’t subtley go up and look at the author photo. Kurt clearly wasn’t forced to have his cover on the photo like me.
growing a farmerI

I even thought about snapping a surreptitious photo and texting it to our mutual friend but then the book worker asked him a question and used his name, so I knew I’d be ok.

In fact, we had a good 10 minutes to get acquainted before anyone else arrived. I was going to buy his book no matter what, but I can say now that Kurt is a super smart and sweet guy. We talked Seattle and about our mutual friend’s new store, about Vashon Island, about his book publishing experiences and tour. Pretty much everything except cheese, really.

Yesterday I finally got a chance to crack his book. I can tell already that it’s a book I will need to force myself to read slowly because it’s so exciting for a behind-the-food book fetishist like me. I haven’t even gotten to the cows yet and I am enthralled. I will do a full review when I finish but for now I will give you one paragraph that thrilled me:

”Little by little I came to be unable to eat at my own restaurant at all I told no one, especially not customers. It was a humiliating position to be in. I couldn’t see the possibility of changing the restaurant into a more health-conscious business – the financial pressures were too great. The guy who sold hot baked goods from a tiny storefront had been replaced with a restaurateur disgusted by eating at his own establishment. My relationship with food had been shaken…”

Don’t you want to read more? Here’s a link for buying

3 responses to “Growing a Farmer

  1. New store on Vashon Island? What new store on Vashon Island?
    I’m sitting here, Vashon Island, reading your book, your delightful and completely engaging book that I bought when I was at Rainbow buying cheese to bring up to Vashon for the holiday weekend…. and now I took a break from the book to read the blog…..

    Okay, so, spill, what new store on Vashon?

    As we are losing so many in this recession, it’ll be nice to welcome a great new one.

  2. Thanks for getting back so quickly. We, on Vashon, have Minglements, which someday you will come and enjoy…. http://www.minglement.com/ And it is terrific, but as you teach in your book, if there isn’t a good turn over, there isn’t a chance for a great cheese shop such as yours. Thank you for the truly superb tone and content that you wove into your book. You made me laugh, you gave me some insight from a different perspective; and you taught me alot. Now, if I can just be less intimidated by you Rainbow folks, I might just step up and ask a question when I have it rather than just grab the pre-wrapped. Thank you .

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