Pure egg-noggy goodness

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People often wonder what dogs are looking at when they seem to be staring intently at a certain middle-distance point where nothing, at least to the human eye, appears to be of interest.

The Bitch can't solve this age-old mystery as it pertains to all canines, but in her own case, she has been staring at the dairy case at the Fresh Market in Coconut Grove (2460 Bayshore Drive) off and on since this past January, when the Homestead Creamery eggnog disappeared.

The Homestead Creamery is not in Homestead in Miami-Dade County; it's in Burnt Chimney, Virginia, and is kind of an old-school dairy operation. Once a year, from about late November to early January, the dairy, which normally produces ice cream and organic milk for distribution in the Mid-Atlantic states, whips up a batch of eggnog that gets sent to a few lucky Fresh Markets around the country.

This stuff, is, like, the best substance in the world.

It's a complete food — frothy, slightly spicy, thick with delicious fresh cream -- especially for holiday-hating dogs who begin spurning solid food at the first notes of "White Christmas." The special eggnog got The Bitch through the dark days from Thanksgiving through New Years last year, and then, as eggnog does, it disappeared around Three Kings Day.

Hence The Bitch's vigil. All manner of holiday treats began appearing at the Fresh Market before even Halloween — cranberries, fruit cakes (not the people who live in the Grove all year round — actual edible fruitcakes), Christmas blend coffee, sugared plums, and, most disappointingly tantalizingly, eggnog-flavored cookies.

But when will the real stuff appear? After pacing the aisles, tail tucked and whining, The Bitch finally called Cindy Jessup, Fresh Market's corporate dairy manager. Jessup had good news: "We have many people [and dogs] asking for this brand already. The first shipment is due to be in your store around November 17, and a new shipment will go out each week through December 22."

That might just be enough of a supply to crack 2007. — Jean Carey

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