Author Archives: jmartin437

About jmartin437

I've worked in and around the world of high end cheese for 27 years. I've been everything from a department manager who hired and fired and trained staffs to a weekend warrior who shows up ties on an apron the middle of a rush and talks to customers and cleans up the place. I enjoy it all, and I especially like my current situation conducting informal seminars about cheese at area bars and in class at the 92nd St. Y. The current schedule is always up at In addition I conduct private events that are perfect to lead off birthday parties for foodies and sommeliers and also they make great entertainment for corporate team building events and associates meetings at law firms. In addition, I've been a freelance journalist for 27 years. Currently my profiles of leading musicians and filmmakers appear in the Wall Street Journal and I also wrote about sports for the Root, and for five loooong years, which included the entirety of the Isiah Thomas Knicks era, I wrote about the NBA for the New York Sun. I enjoyed writing about basketball so much that I now do it here at rotations for free.

October 24, 92Y

Big A–ed Reds 92Y, October 24 Instructors: Martin Johnson (The Joy of Cheese), Michael Whidden (Regal Wines) Carol Shelton “Wild Thing” Zinfandel 2016 (Mendocino County, California) Spirited and zesty, satisfying deep body, with lively cherry and smoky cracked pepper flavors that … Continue reading

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At VinePair on Pilsners

Pilsners Are an Elegant Outlier to the Craft Beer Hype Machine   words: MARTIN JOHNSON Pilsners have one of the most dynamic backstories in beer. The style was developed in the Czech village of Pilsen in the first half of the 19th … Continue reading

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Fromage of the Day, Collected

For about five years, approximately 2009-2014, I did a regular blog post called Fromage of the Day where I introduced and paired a cheese then I compared it to a cultural touchstone. Here’s a grouping of them.

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At VinePair on Cheese and Craft Beer

This isn’t your usual what IPA to pair with Roquefort kind of piece. The Craft Beer and Cheese Businesses Have a Lot in Common, But Only One Is Surging words: MARTIN JOHNSON illustration: DANIELLE GRINBERG     On a blustery, wintry day in … Continue reading

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At WSJ on Beer

When I’m not in the food biz, I work as a freelance journalist and my most visible regular outlet is the Wall St. Journal, where I write about jazz. In 2014, they let me write about beer on occasion.  These … Continue reading

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When Will They Get It

I wish owners owners of places with great beer programs would understand the value of what they have. Last night, I was at a bar/casual restaurant, a couple of barstools down from two young women and the owner was chatting … Continue reading

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What’s the Difference Between Working in Cheese and Working in Beer

So what’s the difference between working in cheese and working in beer? I get that question about once a week from my regulars at the job at Westside Market’s East Village location in Manhattan.  My answer depends on how much … Continue reading

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