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Queso Diego May Meeting Announcement

Join us at our May Meeting on Tuesday, May 21 at 6:30pm at AleSmith (9990 AleSmith Ct, San Diego, Ca 92126)!  We will be meeting in the BARREL ROOM (please bring a lawn chair).

At this meeting, we have several features:

  • EPIC Cheese Competition!  (We will have an Epic Cheese Competition as part of our September Meeting.  Peter Zien and a panel will be judging, and the cheese deemed Best of Show will have the opportunity to make their cheese professionally with Peter at CheeseSmith!  We will cover details of this competition and answer questions you may have)
  • The History of Cheese (This main presentation by Marci will cover the evolution of cheese from its origins, which evolved more out of necessity, to modern-day cheeses we enjoy today, as more of a luxury.  Along the way, we will also do some taste testing ranging from fresh cheese to dessert cheese)
  • Cypress Grove Cheese Ambassador (Hear from Club Member Lisa, who is a Cypress Grove Cheese Ambassador!  And we will have a 3 pound Humboldt Fog cheese wheel to sample!  And there may be swag given out…)


  • We’re meeting in the BARREL ROOM (walk in the main entrance, past the main bar and gift shop, which leads to the Barrel Room
  • Upon arrival, please check-in at the check-in table
  • Please set up your potluck item (and we have labels and label stands, grab a sharpie and label what you bought
  • BRING A LAWN CHAIR (anytime we meet in the Barrel Room, don’t forget your lawn chair).  Optionally bring a jacket
  • Members are encouraged to bring homemade cheese or potluck item or beverage.  If alcohol, only homemade alcohol is allowed (NO COMMERICAL ALCOHOL).  Better yet, enjoy some of the tasty AleSmith beverages!
  • Potluck/socializing beginning at 6:30pm, and the meeting at 7:00pm
  • Finally, Members, if you need anything from the Library of Cheesemaking, please email your request by May 17, for delivery at the meeting on March 21.  Be sure to check the list of offerings and send an email to

Queso Diego April Meeting Announcement

April is National Grilled Cheese Month, and every year, Queso Diego celebrates it with a Grilled Cheese Extravaganza, which will be our meeting on Tuesday, April 16 at AleSmith at 6:30pm!  It is one of my favorite meetings every year, where we bring equipment and ingredients, and make & share the most amazing Grilled Cheese creations you’ve ever tried!  A couple things to highlight… the exact location inside AleSmith is being finalized and will be announced in the next day or so.  If you have equipment to bring for this meeting (folding table, grill, etc.), please, please bring it.  Cooking equipment must be non-electric.  If you don’t, there are always people willing to share.  Everyone should definitely bring a lawn chair.  Pro tip: For you grilled cheese concoction, it’s recommended to prep anything you can prep the night before (shredding, cutting, chopping, slicing, marinating, pre-cooking, etc.)… Now, read on for details about the Grilled Cheese Extravaganza!

Grilled Cheese EXTRAVAGANZA!

If you were at the March Meeting, we previewed this, and that information/presentation is on our website ( under Meeting Notes.  Here’s the link:

The Grilled Cheese Extravaganza (our April Meeting) is on Tuesday, April 16 at 6:30pm at AleSmith (exact location inside of AleSmith will be announced soon).  We will NOT have our traditional potluck at this meeting.  If you’re not planning on making grilled cheese, you can consider bringing something that might go well with Grilled Cheese.  Remember that we can bring homemade alcohol (non-commercial) only, or better yet, enjoy an AleSmith beer (Queso Diego gets a 10% discount).

In broad strokes, plan on bringing the equipment and ingredients to make 2-3 Grilled Cheeses, and cut into 6-8 or so bite-sized pieces to share.  You’re welcome to work with others on this.  Perhaps make a sandwich, wander around to taste other samples, and come back and make another sandwich.  Cooks can rotate; not everyone may have all the equipment, and some people are always willing to share.  If you do have the equipment, please bring it.

Choose your Grilled Cheese recipe/concoction.  If you’ve never been to this before, you will be absolutely amazed at the creativity in the creations.  We’re not purists (except Larry), so your interpretation of a Grilled Cheese sandwich is your interpretation and is welcome!  Make sure your cheese will melt (avoid high moisture, low/no fat and too acidic cheeses).  Cheeses that won’t melt include Halloumi, Feta, Cotija, Ricotta, Queso Fresco…

Equipment to bring:

  • Folding table
  • Camping stove with Propane (or chafing dish)… as long as it’s non-electric
  • Lighter

Cooking stuff to bring:

  • Pan (with lid) or griddle
  • Spatula
  • Sharp knife/Bread Knife/Pizza cutter to cut into bite-sized samples
  • Paper towels
  • Couple paper plates are helpful
  • Cutting board
  • Any plasticware or utensils you might need to prepare, move or cut with
  • And your Ingredients!

Meeting Schedule:

  • 6:30: Arrive, check in at the check-in table, grab a label and stand to label what you’re making
  • Set up your “workstation” (table, grill, etc.), get organized and label what you’re making.  BUT DON’T START COOKING YET.
  • 7:00: We’ll have a very short meeting with announcements, followed by a shotgun start, LET THE COOKING COMMENCE!
  • Cook a sandwich, cut up into bite-sized pieces, wander around and sample, and repeat!  (I will be gathering some samples to take up front to AleSmith’s staff).

Pro Tips:

  • I can’t stress this one enough: Prep/cook/chop/cut/shred/mix/marinate in advance.  Do anything you can in advance.  I will already have my bread cut, and cheese shredded the night before.
  • When you leave your home to come to the meeting, don’t worry about putting cheese in a cooler, you’re want your cheese at room temp
  • Non-stick pans work well
  • Butter (or mayo) the outsides of your bread, not the insides!
  • Cook at a low-med or medium heat, so you don’t burn bread while waiting for the cheese to melt (a lid to your pan helps trap the heat and melt the cheese)
  • You may remove the rind if using something like a Brie


You can check out these resources to get the creative juices flowing:

Queso Diego March Meeting Announcement

Join us at our March Meeting on Tuesday, March 19th at 6:30 at AleSmith (9990 AleSmith Ct, San Diego, Ca 92126)! We will be meeting in the MEZZANINE area.

MAKE AND BRING your homemade Chevre (goat cheese). Get creative with the flavoring(s) you would like to add to your Chevre… Savory? Sweet? Spice? Herbs? Fruit?

At this meeting, we will provide crackers and have a Chevre tasting! We will also have a Grilled Cheese presentation in advance of our Grilled Cheese Extravaganza coming up on April 16. Between the Brie class in January, and your homemade Chevres, there may be cheesemaking questions (general questions, process questions, troubleshooting questions, etc.), and we will take a little time tapping into club members to answer your questions. And do you have a picture of your cheese that you would like to ask about? Email that picture to ( no later than March 17, and I will have it to project at the meeting. Finally, we will also have a special announcement for a Cheese Contest (spoiler alert… the winner will get to make their winning recipe professionally with Peter Zien at CheeseSmith!).

We’re meeting in the MEZZANINE area (walk in the main entrance, past the main bar and gift shop towards the Barrel Room. Before the Barrel Room, use the stairs or elevator to go UPSTAIRS to the Mezzanine)
Upon arrival, please check-in at the check-in table
Potluck items will go on the bar, and your homemade Chevre will go on a separate table we will have. We will have labelling… grab a sharpie, put you NAME and WHAT YOU BROUGHT!
There are chairs in the Mezzanine (no need to bring lawn chairs in). Optionally bring a jacket.
Members are encouraged to bring homemade cheese (especially Chevre!) to this meeting, potluck item, beverages. If alcohol, only homemade alcohol is allowed (NO COMMERCIAL ALCOHOL). Better yet, enjoy some of the tasty AleSmith beverages!
Potluck/socializing beginning at 6:30, and the meeting at 7:00

February Meeting – Special Ticketed Anniversary Event

10 cheeses come in

In lieu of our February meeting, we will be celebrating our 13th anniversary as a club with our popular Bubbly and Cheese Pairing. This is a ticketed event for members and their guests and will not be held at AleSmith. If you are member and didn’t receive an invitation, or if you aren’t a member yet and would like to join as a member and attend the event, please reach out to the officers.

We’ll resume regular meetings at AleSmith in March.

Queso Diego January Meeting Announcement

Goat cheese with thymus

Join us at our January Meeting on Tuesday, January 16 at 6:30 at AleSmith (9990 AleSmith Ct, San Diego, Ca 92126)!

At this meeting, a cheesemaking presentation will be given by Larry. Also, we will specifically go over making Chevre (goat cheese), and we will be GIVING AWAY 20 free Chevre cheesemaking kits where you can get some goat milk and make your own goat cheese with basic equipment you probably already have in your kitchen. Hang on to those kits though, and make your goat cheese mid-March, as we will be having a club Goat Cheese tasting at the March Meeting! Any level of cheesemaker can do this. If you’re newer to cheesemaking, this is an easy (and good) one to do!

We’re meeting in the BARREL ROOM (walk in the main entrance, and walk between the main bar and gift shop straight back to the Barrel Room)
Upon arrival, please check-in at the check-in table
Please bring a lawn chair and jacket (we have no control over the temperature in the Barrel Room, and it is January)

Members are encouraged to bring homemade cheese, potluck item, beverages. If alcohol, only homemade alcohol is allowed (NO COMMERICAL ALCOHOL). Better yet, enjoy some of the tasty AleSmith beverages! If you do bring something for the club to enjoy, please provide everyone with a short description about it prior to the commencement of the potluck
Potluck/socializing beginning at 6:30, and the meeting at 7:00

Club Membership dues for 2024 and February Anniversary Party (on Feb 20):

Payments to Queso Diego are via PayPal to Please ALWAYS use the “Friends and Family” option to avoid paying extra fees. If used, we will not be collecting the extra fee. (In addition, you can also pay at our regular meeting on January 16).

February Anniversary Party Tickets are $25 for member tickets and $35 for non-member tickets. Because this event usually sells out, members can bring one non-member guest for now. Please note that this pricing is through January 31. On February 1, the pricing goes up by $5 ($30 member/$40 non-member). In the PayPal Notes section, please indicate “Feb Anniv Party” along with your name and the name of another person you may be paying for.

To pay for your 2024 Queso Diego Club Membership, it is $20 individual, or $30 for a couple. In the PayPal Notes section, please indicate “Membership” along with your name and the name of another person you may be paying for.

We look forward to seeing you at the meeting on Tuesday!

Queso Diego November Meeting Announcement – Special Venue

November 21st 2023 Queso Diego Meeting 6:30 PM

This month’s meeting will be at
CoLab Public House
2129 Industrial Ct, Vista

The meeting will be an informal get-together, being that Thanksgiving is that week.
We will not have our normal potluck because there is food on the premise to purchase along with beers, wines, seltzers, and more. We will have cheese from Jasper Hill Farms to serve (compliments of Zoe Brickley) and of course homemade cheese is always welcome. Please refrain from bringing other outside foods and enjoy the offerings from Baby’s Badass Burgers.

The meeting spot will be upstairs in the mezzanine. The following are some of the drink and food options. Beer, wine, seltzers, slushees, and cocktails from Barrel and Stave, Breakwater, Laguna Beach, and Propaganda Winery. There are also some soda and NA beer options. Baby’s Badass Burgers serves burgers, chicken sandwiches, pizzas, wings, salads, shareable sides, vegetarian and vegan options, and more.

There is a bingo event separate from ours that will be taking place downstairs, and it is sponsored by Deja Vu, which is a local lingerie and adult toy purveyor. The bingo event will be 7-9pm and is open to anyone who wants to partake.

Once again, board elections are in November, so if anyone is interested in serving on the board, let us know. The club has specific needs for Treasurer and Education.

Thank you to Chris Banker for arranging this event at CoLab. Hope to see you there!