The Rind serves unique cheese pairings for local foodies


The Rind in midtown has a large selection of wines to complement the large array of artisan and farmstead cheeses they serve.

Kaitlin Bruce

Local cheese, wine and beer shop, The Rind, is causing a splash by giving the best pairing experience for Sacramento locals.

Located on 18th and L streets, The Rind has set itself apart from many new shops springing up, because of its unique approach to pairing artisan and farmstead cheeses.

Amanda Fry, a server at The Rind said she enjoys the unique qualities that the shop entails, which she feels attributes to their success.

“We like to have fun with our main product, and we stand out in customer service among other restaurants,” Fry said. “There’s nothing quite like us in Sacramento, it helps that we are one of a kind on the grid.”

Sara Arbabian, owner and cheese connoisseur chose to open The Rind after seeing other cheese shops, seeking to add her own special flair.

“It was a gradual decision based on my passion for pairing cheese and wine,” Arbabian said. “I was reevaluating what I was doing in my life and one day I walked into a cheese shop, and knew exactly what I needed to be doing.”

What makes The Rind so special are its cheeses, which you may not find in many stores, let alone many other restaurants. The process they go through allows for much more complex and unique flavors, for a better experience.

“Our cheese are artisan and farmstead made, it basically means they are made by hand and on the farm,” Arbabian said. “It’s totally different than buying cheeses that are made by a machine with artificial ingredients.”

Mix one of The Rind’s artisan and farmstead cheese with a deliciously complementing wine or beer and you have a recipe for success.

For something more hearty than a cheese board, there’s also a full menu based on cheese-centric entrees such as salads, soups, grilled cheese sandwiches and Mac n’ Cheese.

Items such as “Not Your Mom’s Mac” made with aged parmigiano reggiano, gruyere, Fiscalini’s San Joaquin gold and bread crumbs or the “French Onion” featuring a baguette with caramelized onions and gruyere are sure to please your palette.

First time customer Becky Dose said she enjoyed her experience and said it was not quite what she expected it to be.

“I heard of The Rind and I thought I would come in here and hear jazz or classical, but they’re playing Fleetwood Mac and Queen. I love the vibe,” Dose said. “You can kick back, and there’s good service and no pressure, they were able to make some great recommendations.”

“For me, I can never pick a favorite because everyday I’m in a different state of mind or mood,” Arbabian said.

For Arbabian, she said her favorite part of owning The Rind is the interaction with the customers and bringing them new experiences through her passion for pairing cheese, wine and beer.

“People genuinely get excited about new pairings, and I get excited about helping them find those new experiences,” Arbabian said. “It’s hard to come by artisan cheeses in the first place and to pair that with those wines and beers brings an exciting interaction.”

One of The Rind’s most important policies is to give back to the community. They want people to feel at home and have a good time, and don’t mind the occasional cheese-y pun. (Which they get a lot.)

“I always feel like its good for people to know we are part of the community and are full of life and energy,” Arbabian said. “What we do is a unique experience and we want people to come in and feel like part of a family, part of a whole new experience.”

Kaitlin Bruce can reached at [email protected]