Holiday cheese popup in swank Portland loft

praise cheeses

If delving into a dense slice of nutty gruyere is your idea of a religious experience, there’s a food event in Portland next month that answers your prayers.

Praise Cheeses on Dec. 4th is a two-hour tasting of fromage from the European alps, wine from Alsace and views of Casco Bay from a private downtown loft. Leave it to Rosemont Productions to kick out this jam. “It should be educational and fun,” said Joe Appel, popup organizer.

Cheese monger Alberto Aurilio of Seacrest Foods International will walk guests through the nuances of wonderful winter cheeses from the mountains of Europe in this Christmas dairy spectacular. Appel, Rosemont’s wine guy, pours complementary vins, while culinary connector Christopher Papagni flings open the doors to his swank pad.


Eat cheese here.

“This is like Dinner Lab held in other cities,” said Papagni, a New Yorker who was recruited by MECA to launch its culinary program and is now a Maine-based hospitality consultant.

“I’m excited to have it at my place. It’s one more thing connecting me to the Portland food scene,” said Papagni, who may hold underground dinners here if the cheese klatch is a hit.

Popups in public locales have been popular for years, but noshing in a private abode is the next evolution.

“People are sort of intrigued if they know it’s somebody’s home. It’s warm and inviting and you can be a voyeur,” said Papagni.

In this case, if you like the setting, you can buy it. “I have an ulterior motive, my apartment is for sale.” Asking price? $639,000.

All the cheeses and wines tasted at Praise Cheeses can be ordered that night with discounts offered to event-goers. Holiday food shopping was never this refined. Hallelujah!

Order tickets here.

Kathleen Pierce

About Kathleen Pierce

A lifelong journalist with a deep curiosity for what's next. Interested in food, culture, trends and the thrill of a good scoop. BDN features reporter based in Portland since 2013.