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Restaurants | IN THE MOOD


September 21, 2000|JESSICA STRAND

Cheeses make a most indulgent, and sophisticated, end to a meal.

* Picholine: Owner Patrick Milo will brief you on Brin d'Amour, a sheep's-milk cheese from Corsica; Roaring Forties Blue from Australia; or Rondin d'Alvignac, an aged goat cheese from Quercy. (Brin d'Amour, $20.99 per pound; Roaring Forties, $17.99 per pound; Rondin d'Alvignac, $6.99 per 6-ounce piece.) Picholine, 3360 W. 1st St., Los Angeles, (213) 252-8722.

* La Brea Bakery: Try the English Montgomery Cheddar, the nuttier, creamier Keen's Cheddar or a goat cheese--perhaps domestic Humboldt Fog from Sonoma County or earthy Rocamadour, another aged cheese from Quercy. (Montgomery and Keen's Cheddar, $16 per pound; Humboldt Fog, $19 per pound; Rocamadour, $2.75 per 1 1/2-ounce button.) La Brea Bakery, 624 S. La Brea Ave., L.A., (323) 939-6813.

* Pascal Epicerie: Try creamy blue Fourme d'Ambert; hard, nutty Cantal; or soft, ripe Reblochon. (Cantal, $16 per pound; Fourme d'Ambert, $12 per pound; Reblochon, $7 per quarter wheel.) Pascal Epicerie, 1000 N. Bristol Ave., Newport Beach, (949) 752-0107.

* Wine House: Buyer Mark Estrin's selection includes Sally Jackson's sheep's- and goat's-milk cheese from Washington state and Judy Shed's aged goat cheese from Indiana; also herbed sheep's-milk Manchego and goat's milk Garrotxa (ga-ROACH-a), both from Spain. (Sally Jackson and Judy Shed, both $18 per pound; Manchego Oveja Romero, $10 per pound; Garrotxa, $12 per pound.) Wine House, 2311 Cotner Ave., West L.A., (310) 479-3731.

* The Cheese Store of Beverly Hills: Here they have truffled Italian cheeses, French goat cheeses from Poitou, cow's-milk Cadi from the Pyrenees and faintly smoky Mahon from Spain. (Italian truffle cheeses, $30-$60 per pound; Poitou goat cheeses, $20 per pound; Cadi and Mahon, $15 per pound.) The Cheese Store of Beverly Hills, 419 N. Beverly Drive, Beverly Hills, (310) 278-2855.

* Say Cheese: Buyer Glenn Harley is expanding his already impressive 200-plus assortment. He carries cave-aged EMI Gruyere from Switzerland, oak-leaf-wrapped Spanish Cabrales Pastor and Umbriaco del Piave (only available fall-winter), aged in red wine pulp. (EMI Swiss Gruyere, $19.98 per pound; Cabrales Pastor, $14.50 per pound; Ubriaco del Piave, $31.98 per pound). Say Cheese, 2800 Hyperion Ave., Silver Lake, (323) 665-0545.

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