Murray’s Cheese, Greenwich Village’s cathedral to the possibilities of milk, is coming to Southern California this fall, opening “stores-within-stores” at some Ralphs grocery locations.
The first is set to open in early October at Long Beach’s Marina Pacifica mall, followed by stores in Sherman Oaks and Marina del Rey and on Pico Boulevard and Beverwil Drive in Los Angeles.
The openings are the latest in a series of cooperative ventures between Murray’s and Kroger Co., the parent company of Ralphs. Since 2008, they have opened cheese shops in more than 80 stores in 11 states. The goal, the company says, is to reach 100 stores.
Each cheese shop will occupy 350 to 450 square feet in an existing Ralphs grocery store. On offer will be artisan cheeses from around the world, including several California makers.
Bellwether Farms, Point Reyes, Cypress Grove, Central Coast Creamery and Fiscalini Farms are among the dairies being considered by Murray’s.
In addition, there will be a full line of cheese-related accessories, such as jams, charcuterie, pickles, candy and crackers.
“Murray's provides the expert training to Kroger associates, selects the products, and finds local cheeses to highlight in each location -- we often host cheese makers in-store for tastings and participate in community events,” the company said in a news release.
Murray’s is the brainchild of Rob Kaufelt, who bought a small stand-alone cheese store in 1991 and has turned it into one of the country’s largest purveyors of artisanal food products.