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As much as we fully support your New Year resolutions, it?s worth breaking any diet-related ones for La Fromagerie.

The charming cheese shop opened its doors in the Dogpatch before the holidays and has been quietly luring people in with its extensive selection of quality hard, soft and blue varieties.

A native of the French Alps, owner Ruben Donze has been operating Bouvet (a decorative hardware importer) out of the American Industrial Center next door for years, and felt the area seriously needed, well, more cheese. He carries mostly French-made fromage--those he knows and loves--but he also stocks carefully selected Italian and California dairy products, as well as fresh bread from Firebrand Artisan Breads, Verrigni pasta, charcuterie and other gourmet provisions.

Most important, sampling is encouraged. On a recent visit, Donze?s right-hand man, Romain (who just moved here from Paris), aimed to please our palate, knowledgeably describing each cheese he graciously doled out. Standouts included the mild, semi-soft Toma from Point Reyes and the not-too-sharp Crottin de Touraine.

Donze plans to introduce a takeout menu of cheese sandwiches toward the end of the month. As if we needed an excuse to go back.

2425 Third St.; 415-596-0850 or

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