|Rainbow moonstones, garnets and 18k gold|
Don't get me wrong. If you want a big diamond, I'm happy to get it for you. I just sold a stunning 1.70 ct., "F" color, VVS1 clarity (almost flawless!) Lazare Diamond just the other day. But you
certainly don't need a large one to have an equally spectacular stone.
Now let's get on to the cheese. I was having some Comte that I had picked up at Whole Foods. Normally when I need a good cheese I head over to Formaggio's Kitchen, a small cheese shop (the only cheese store in America with a cheese cave underneath it!), and get what I want because they consistently have the best cheese in the area. And as it happens, I particularly like Comte, so I buy it often. However when I cut into the Comte from Whole Foods, it immediately became apparent that it was nowhere near the quality of what comes from Formaggio's. The piece of cheese broke in half (Comte is a fairly dense cheese and I had never had a piece do this before) immediately, the color was off and quite frankly the taste was completely bland and nothing at all like the ones I get from Formaggio's. I went back and looked at the wrapper and realized I was paying the same price per pound as I would have at Formaggio's!
So how does this relate to jewelry? First of all the fact that Formaggio's is a small operation allows them to more individually source their product. They often know their suppliers personally, they are fussy about what they will take, and they actually check each piece of their product when it comes in. This directly relates to the way that I purchase the colored stones that I buy. I know my suppliers personally (some I have known for almost 40 years), they know what the quality is I am looking for and won't even bother sending me stuff they know isn't up to my standards and I actually check each stone that comes into my hands personally. When you buy from a chain operation, or even from a jeweler who simply doesn't make their own work but just buys finished goods from their various suppliers, you will never get this kind of attention to detail. So you may be able to find sapphires that are larger and priced the same as my smaller ones, but you will not get the quality you can get from someone like me.
I'd continue my analogies into the actual meal we ate, but I'm starting to get hungry with all of this food talk and dinner is still quite far in the future. But by now, I'm sure you get the idea!