I decided to start this post because of a comment in another thread. I didn’t want to respond fully there since it might have led to a side discussion, so I offered only a brief comment there and am offering some more thoughts on pricing in this thread. This is the comment that got me thinking:
I’m a little frustrated by reading posts by people who can choose to price their gigs any way they wish, but instead come to the forum to mock those who try to sell at higher prices.
I can go to my local WalMart and buy a cardboard tube of processed ground cellulose and a little cheese for less than a dollar. It is labeled “parmesan” and some people actually like it on their pizza. At the same Wal-Mart, I can buy a wedge of cheese also labeled Parmesan. It isn’t high quality, but it tastes a bit better and it costs around $5 a wedge. I don’t fault anyone who likes it. Personally, I love good Italian food so I go to a local market that has imported cheese labeled Parmesano-Reggiano and is cut from a cheese wheel and tastes like heaven. I feel lucky to be able to afford it once in awhile since it’s about $20 for a very tiny wedge.
If I were Rachael Ray, perhaps I’d just have some perfect aged Parmesano-Reggiano delivered to me by jet and I might pay some price that sounds insane to others. I can’t do that, and honestly I wouldn’t, but who am I to fault a restaurant chef who might fly to Italy and buy the best for a high-end restaurant?
It’s about quality up to a point but it’s also about perception. Sometimes high prices are justified and sometimes they aren’t, but that is between any buyer and seller anywhere. Just keep that in mind instead of stirring pots that could be put to better use making good food with good cheese.