St. James Cheese Company, New Orleans
Richard Sutton's interest in cheese began as a child when he first visited Europe with his parents. However, on the way to becoming New Orleans' premier cheesemonger, he was waylaid into banking, a career which inspired no passion whatsoever. On a whim, and with a fresh visa in hand, Richard and his wife Danielle moved to London in 2002 to see what adventures would find them. What found them was Paxton & Whitfield, the 200-plus-year-old cheese shop in the St. James neighborhood, and supplier of cheese to the royal household. And so began Richard's transition from bored banker to passionate cheesemonger. Living in London and working at Paxton's allowed Richard access to the great cheese makers and affineurs of Europe and a wealth of knowledge and training about cheese. In 2006, Richard and Danielle decided to move back to the US and open their own cheese business. Having met in New Orleans while in college and having enormous fondness for the city, they decided that this was where they would open the St. James Cheese Company. Despite the challenges of opening a business in post-Katrina New Orleans, St. James Cheese has been welcomed with open arms by the city and has grown a loyal and steady following in the six years since opening.