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A Cheesy Romance From the Start

Elizabeth Rose Moroney met Jeremy Carl Blaustein on her first day of work at Formaggio Kitchen, a cheese shop in Cambridge, Mass. Both were cashiers behind the bread counter.

Mr. Blaustein had started as a seasonal helper at the shop, which counts the cellist Yo-Yo Ma as a regular, in December 2014. But he was soon rising through its ranks, and had become a part-time supervisor by the time she was hired in May 2016. Not long after, Ms. Moroney, who has a culinary arts certificate from Boston University, was fast-tracked to become a supervisor.

Neither was in the market for romance when they started piecing together that they had a lot in common, including the fact that both were then in long-term relationships.

“Early on, it was clear that we shared a passion for food, cooking, travel and the outdoors,” Mr. Blaustein said.

Both are also Harvard graduates. Ms. Moroney, 32, received a bachelor’s degree from the university before enrolling in culinary school. Mr. Blaustein, 38, a graduate of Wheaton College, holds a master’s degree in education from Harvard, as well as a master’s degree in English literature from the University of Massachusetts Boston.

By the end of 2016, they had yet another thing in common: each of their relationships had started to rot. “We commiserated over the disappointment of having serious relationships that were souring,” Ms. Moroney said.

That December, she broke up with her boyfriend. Later that day, Mr. Blaustein was the first person she called for support. “I think becoming friends with Jeremy made me realize that I really wasn’t happy, and that the relationship needed to be over,” Ms. Moroney said.

By the time they met to commiserate further over a drink at Alden & Harlow, a bar in Cambridge, in mid-January 2017, Mr. Blaustein had weathered his own difficult breakup. Each had also started to see the other as more than a friend.

Ms. Moroney, who had been promoted to full-time supervisor in August 2016, was technically Mr. Blaustein’s boss by then. But dating a colleague, even one who was a supervisor, wasn’t an issue. “The shop we work at is very accepting of finding love at work,” Ms. Moroney said. “We are not the first Formaggio couple.”

In February 2017, she invited Mr. Blaustein over for dinner. If they didn’t fall in love while enjoying the seafood stew they made together that night, which they consider their first date, the two were well on their way. “It didn’t take long for us to admit our feelings for each other,” he said.

The following year, in August 2018, they moved in together, into a house in Belmont, Mass. Several months later, their time working at the same shop came to an end. In April 2019, Mr. Blaustein was promoted to his current role as general manager and cheese buyer at Formaggio Kitchen Kendall, an outpost of the original store. That same month, Ms. Moroney was also promoted; she is now assistant general manager at the Cambridge store, where she oversees a 70-person staff.

They became engaged on Feb. 4, 2020, their third dating anniversary, after Ms. Moroney co-taught a class at Formaggio Kitchen called Building the Perfect Cheese Plate, at which Mr. Blaustein served as her assistant.

When they got home, Ms. Moroney began dropping her things at their front door as Mr. Blaustein turned on the lights. There, on the dining room table, was their favorite cheese, robiola incavolata, a type of goat cheese, along with two little signs. One read, “You forgot one perfect cheese plate.” The other read, “The proposal plate: Robiola Incavolata, Art Deco diamond ring, lifetime of happiness.”

Ms. Moroney, who knew Mr. Blaustein thought of marriage as a patriarchal institution and one to be avoided, was surprised.

Mr. Blaustein, though, had glimpsed what he felt was a perfect view of married life with Ms. Moroney during their first Thanksgiving together, which they hosted at their Belmont house in 2018. With relatives and friends coming and going that day, he began to see for the first time how the two could become a family, he said.

They were married June 4 at the Eustis Estate in Milton, Mass., before Katherine Read, a friend and American Marriage Ministries minister, and 140 fully vaccinated guests.


Vincent M. Mallozzi contributed reporting.

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