Yesterday we brought you the unexpected discovery of a James Patterson quotation on a block of mimolette cheese at Chelsea's Westside Market. Intrigued, we ventured to the store in search of the mind behind the rind. And there we discovered Peter "The Doctor" Daniels, a seven-year cheese man of the Westside Market and a 25-year veteran of the food industry, who started putting quotations on the cheese just to fill a labeling void. "There's extra space where a description is supposed to go but I found that people weren't reading them," he explains. "I thought I would put something else that people could be inspired by."
Devoted cheese fanatics come to the store to try new flavors and "trust his judgment" when it comes to picking a new cheese. The labels have received lots of positive feedback—with just one exception. "I put a 'religious' quotation and some woman complained," says Daniels. "It was a U2 quote [from one of their tours]: 'Jesus, Jew, Mohammed, it's true, All sons of Abraham.' I'm a big fan of U2." There seems to be no exact science to his quotation methodology, rather Daniels finds inspiration from the music he and his co-workers play in the store. "We just play whatever we're in the mood for. Lots of metal, Bruce Springsteen, some other stuff. I play music from the 40s and stuff but [my co-workers] hate Sinatra."
Daniels says he has no plans to stop his lyrics on the limburger but worries that the grocery store will replace the scales he currently uses. "They have plans to get new scales but those scales don't leave enough room!" laments Daniels. He hopes he will be able to hang on to at least one if the store chooses to make the switch. But you may want to check out his lexical nuggets soon, just in case. And for more of his work, we were reminded that Grub Street took a look at some of his labels last summer.