The Wedge & Wheel Cheese Bar
A look at the new Stillwater cheese shop that encourages lollygagging.
Photo by Katherine Harris
You may have been to one of the excellent cheese shops in the metro, but have you been to a cheese bar? The Wedge & Wheel, recently opened in Stillwater, is both. Sure, you can sample before you buy at most shops, but Wedge & Wheel owner Chris Kohtz really wants you to think of his new shop as a cheese bar: a place where you can settle in and hang out with the cheese.
This means you can order a flight of cheeses—be they American regionals from Vermont or California, a selection of European beauties, or a throw-caution-to-the-wind selection chosen by the cheesemonger. Then order an adult beverage (there are bottles of local beer and a small list of wines) and grab a seat at one of the cafe tables while you really get to know the cheeses before buying a wedge to take home.
The flights are nice-sized portions. The Curd & Cured option I chose came with a pretty hunk of Humboldt Fog, some La Quercia prosciutto, a Wisconsin gouda, and salami with sliced baguettes and fig jam for $13. Not a bad lunch. There’s also a daily grilled cheese sandwich option—the one I had with Kingsley cheddar on seedy bread was just the right amount of gooey.
The tiny shop is airy and bright with a wall of street-side windows, and the aim is focused (it doesn’t sell coffee and there’s no liquor store attached). There are only a few cases at the front, but they are packed to brimming with a well-curated roll call of cheese, salumi, and artisan products made locally and from afar. It makes me think that it wouldn’t be such a bad thing to have a neighborhood cheese bar on every corner, would it? 308 E. Chestnut St., Stillwater, 651-342-1687, wedgeandwheel.com