Vermont Cheese Council e-Newsletter Volume 3, Issue 2 February, 2010
In this issue:

Meet the Cheesemaker

Cheese News

New Cheeses

Shopping Tips


Cheesemaking Classes

Recipe of the Month

Join the Vermont Cheese Council

...more info

"Seasons of Change"

Our 16 page, Fall / Winter print newsletter, can be read on our web site.

Vermont Cheese Trail Map
Vermont Cheese Trail Map ThumbnailThe new Vermont Cheese Trail Map has just been reprinted! Visit our web site for the latest version, or if you would like some printed copies, please send a request to

Thank you retailers and other associate members for your support of the Vermont Cheese Council!

Black River Produce

Brattleboro Food Coop

Castleton Crackers

Cheese Traders &
Wine Sellers

Dakin Farm

Equinox Resort and Spa

Fairfield Cheese

Hanover Coop

Harvest Market

Healthy Living

Hunger Mountain Coop

Lebanon Coop

Middlebury Natural Foods Co-op

Mountain Cheese and Wine

Mountain Greens Market and Deli

Norma's Restuarant at Topnotch Resort

Newport Specialty Foods

Peter Dixon Dairy Consulting

Provisions International

Ren Hen Cafe and Bakery

Rock Art Brewery

South Royalton Market

Stratton Mountain Provisions

Sugarbush Farm

Sweet Clover

The Cellars Group

The Cheese House

The Cheese Shop/ Wasiks

The Daily Planet

Wine and Cheese Depot

Upper Valley Food Coop

Vermont Cheesemongers

Vermont Institute for Artisan Cheese

Woodstock Farmer's Market


Become a fan of the Vermont Cheese Council on Facebook!

Visit our Facebook page.

Post a comment or a photo about your favorite Vermont cheese.

Follow the Vermont Cheese Council on twitter

Cheese makes a wonderful Valentine's gift. Many of our members sell their cheese  through their web site. Visit our cheesemakers online.

Blue Ledge Farm

Blythedale Farm

Bonnieview Farm

Cabot Creamery

Champlain Valley Creamery

Cobb Hill Cheese

Consider Bardwell Farm

Crawford Family Farm

Crowley Cheese

Dancing Cow Farm

Does' Leap

Fat Toad Farm

Franklin Foods

Grafton Village Cheese

Hildene Farm Signature Cheese

Green Mountain Blue Cheese

Hope Farm

Jasper Hill Farm

Jericho Hill Farm

Lakes End Cheeses

Lazy Lady Farm

Maplebrook Farm

Mt. Mansfield Creamery

Neighborly Farms

Orb Weaver Farm

Peaked Mountain Farm

Ploughgate Creamery

Plymouth Artisan Cheese

Sage Farm

Scholten Family Farm

Shelburne Farms

Spring Brook Farm

Taylor Farm

Thistle Hill Farm

Twig Farm

Vermont Butter & Cheese Creamery.

Vermont Shepherd

von Trapp Farmstead

Willow Hill Farm

West River Creamery

Woodcock Farm

Meet the Cheesemaker

Becky Loftus of
Blythedale Farm,
Corinth, Vermont

How long have you been making cheese?
We have been making cheese for five years in Vermont and 10 years prior on a home/hobby level.
What is the most unique aspect of your operation?
The most unique aspect of our operation is the fact that it is mostly hand made, very little mechanization.

If you weren’t making cheese what would you be doing?
If we weren't making cheese, we would be doing something just as challenging and satisfying!

Name one of your favorite cows?
Our gal, Rosalyn, was our favorite cow.  She just past away recently.  We brought her from New York to join our herd in Vermont.  She was 13-1/2 when she passed away.

Cheese News


The 2nd Annual Vermont Cheesemaker’s Festival will be held on July 25th at the Coach Barn at Shelburne Farms.

The website is live and tickets are now available!Order early, limited availability, last year sold out.

view a video of last year's cheese festival

Last year we had over 60 volunteers and will be looking for more this year. If you are interested in volunteering contact Hilary.

February 7th marked the anniversary of the barn collapse at Taylor Farm in Londonberry. John Wright says “I wanted to express our appreciation for the support we’ve received locally and throughout the state. This is a wonderful area we live in! Also, as always, I want to encourage everyone to "Taste Vermont's new Tradition!”

Sincerely, Jon Wright

Keep Local Farms

Please help support this program that will in turn help support the Vermont cheesemaking community as well as many other farmers, the working landscape and the ability to produce farm products for our community.

Keep Local Farms Program Partners

The Keep Local Farms program has been developed by a group of concerned local leaders in the Northeast, all of them working for the benefit of local dairy farmers. That group includes the following:
Cooperative Development Institute
Vermont Dairy Promotion Council
New England Dairy Promotion Board
New England Family Dairy Farm Cooperative

What is Keep Local Farms™?

• Keep Local Farms is an education and contribution program that connects consumers with local dairy farmers and allows those who are interested in purchasing local foods to support their local farmers. It is a way to educate consumers about the important value of local dairy farms, raise funding to support dairy farmers throughout New England, and drive dairy sales.

• Dairy farmers that are part of Keep Local Farms will receive semi-annual payments to help stabilize and enhance their income despite fluctuations in milk prices.

What are the goals of the Keep Local Farms™ program?

• Promote the purchase of all milk and dairy products.

• Educate consumers about the important value dairy farms and open land bring to communities.

• Provide a stable income to New England dairy farmers by generating funds for the Keep Local Farms program.

How can consumers become involved?

• Buy milk, cheese, yogurt and other dairy products at the store. If you can, purchase dairy products that are made locally in our region.

• Contribute as generously as possible to the Keep Local Farms contribution page on this site.

• Support the businesses and organizations that display the Keep Local Farms logo. Visit our Partners page to find out more about these organizations.

Keep Local Farms and Hannaford’s Supermarket

On January 14, 2010 the Keep Local Farms program launched with Hannaford’s Supermarkets. In January, Hannaford supported an information phase – directing shoppers that purchasing local milk helps local farms and that consumers should go to the web site to learn more about local farms and how they could take part in the Keep Local Farms program. Please help support this program that will in turn help support the Vermont cheesemaking community.

New Cheeses

Hildene Farm
Signature Cheese

Hildene Farm's Signature Cheeses are now ready for tasting. They are producing a fresh chevre, and aged cow cheeses.   Read more

Vermont Butter and Cheese Creamery

will be offering a unique cheese made by Vermont Butter and Cheese Creamery for their February month. The cheese is named Vermont Heart. It is an aged goat cheese with a bay leaf applied on the cheese.
Read more

Jasper Hill’s
seasonal favorite, Winnemere, is out! This cheese is washed with Hill Farmstead Brewery's Belgian Tripel. Yum!

Grafton Village Cheese
has just released a limited run of horseradish cheddar, which is now available in their two retail stores in Grafton and Brattleboro.  It is flavored with horseradish extract and aged for approximately 60 days.

Shopping Tips
For Vermont Cheese

Find a Vermont Cheese Council retailer near you!

On-line/Mail Order Sales
Thistle Hill
Fat Toad Farm
Orb Weaver
Mt. Mansfield Creamery
Twig Farm
Shelburne Farms
Sugarbush Farm
Crowley Cheese
Cabot Creamery 

image1Other On-line Sites that Often Feature
and Carry Vermont Cheese

Murray's Cheese
Saxelby Cheese
Cow Girl Creamery
Artisan Made Northeast

Culture: the world of cheese: a searchable, and extensive, directory of cheese retailers who handle farmstead, artisan, specialty cheeses, etc.


February 25, 2010
Cheese and Beer Pairings

The Bluebird Tavern Burlington, VT:
Seven VT artisanal cheeses paired with 7 domestic craft brews on the house taps. Hosted by Ruth Miller, The Beer & Cheese Maven. 802.540.1786

March 14, 2010
Cooking with Vermont Cheeses

Ariel’s Restaurant
Brookfield, VT

We’ll explore some of the finest Cheeses from Vermont in appetizer, entree and dessert applications. An appetizer of Vermont Goat Cheese Soufflés, an entree of tenderloin of beef accompanied with Bayley Hazen Blue Cheese Scalloped Potatoes and a fresh cheese and Vermont yogurt based mousse with Vermont honey for dessert will be accompanied by a wine selection fit for a very special celebration or a cozy romantic dinner. Allison Hooper of Vermont Butter and Cheese Creamery and Calley Hastings of Fat Toad Farm will be there to talk about cheesemaking as well! Contact for mor info: 802-276-3939

March 20, 2010
First Annual Mac and Cheese Bowl

Albany, NY
Cabot Creamery is the cheese sponsor for the First Annual Mac and Cheese Bowl being held in Albany, New York on March 20.  Sixteen restaurants from the region will be vying for the honors of "The Best Mac and Cheese in Albany".  Proceeds from the event benefit the Regional Foodbank of Northeastern New York"

Shelburne Vineyards Cheese Pairing Series

April 6: "How to Taste” Wine-Beer-Cheese

April 27: Wine, Beer & Cheese Pairing with Jasper Hill

May 18: Wine and Cheese Pairing with Vermont Butter & Cheese Creamery

Contact Shelburne Vineyard for more information (802) 985-8222.

Cheesemaking Classes

Artisan Cheesemaking Workshops at Consider Bardwell Farm in West Pawlet, Vermont. 
Two-day workshops in making and aging cheese on the farm, taught by Peter Dixon. Contact Peter Dixon at Tel. 802-387-4041 or email
March 24-25, 2010
Beginners Class
about cheese making and starting an artisan cheese business.  Topics include starting up a creamery; properties of sheep, cow and goat milk and their use in cheese making; making lactic curd cheeses (Chevre) and Tomme from goat and cow milk; cheese brining; cheese ripening; and financial and marketing information.

April 6-7, 2010
Beginners Class about cheese making and starting an artisan cheese business.  Topics include starting up a creamery; properties of sheep, cow and goat milk and their use in cheese making; making lactic curd cheeses (Chevre) and Tomme from goat and cow milk; cheese brining; cheese ripening; and financial and marketing information.

May 11-12, 2010
Cheesemaking and Affinage: techniques, microbes and facilities. Exploring the craft of cheese making and ripening.  On day one we will make a tomme cheese.  On day two we will follow the steps for ripening this cheese and many others.  The focus will be on ripening cultures, bio-reactions, affinage techniques, quality control, and how to design and construct facilities for the many types of cheese.

Learn more about these classes...

March 25 - 27, 2010
Cheese Camp: 3 Day Vermont Cheese Course

Inn at the Round Barn Farm,
Waitsfield, VT


April 16 and 17, 2010
Cheesemaking Class at Mt. Mansfield Creamery

Cow and goat milk tomme. The class will feature a special chef's selection. Come learn about pairings, recipes, and properties about cave-aged products. Space is limited to only 8. Contact Mt. Mansfield Creamery.

The Vermont Institute For Artisan Cheese Classes

March 8-10, 2010
Essential Principles and Practices of Cheesemaking
Three-day course to learn the fundamentals of cheesemaking and quality control practices.

March 11, 2010
Hygiene and Food Safety in Cheesemaking
Explore hazards of a biological nature which are capable of causing food borne illnesses if present in cheese

March 12, 2010
Quality and Chemistry of Milk
The fundamental principles of the chemistry of milk and explain how characteristics of the raw material (milk) affect the manufacture and quality of the final cheese

March 15 - 17, 2010
Artisan Cheese Practices:
Washed Rind Cheese /Ireland

This course is designed to provide multidimensional background on traditional cheesemaking in Europe. VIAC presents its 12th International program focusing this time on washed rind and Irish cheeses.

See their website for many more classes

Recipe of the Month

By Courtney Contos, Celebrity Chef at the Essex Resort and Spa, and Culinary Consultant

Cheese Soufflé
Makes 5

2 teaspoons unsalted butter (for buttering ramekins)
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon all- purpose flour
1 cup + 2 tablespoons half & half
4 ounces Cheddar cheese or Alpine style cheese (about 1 cup)
3 egg yolks
3 egg whites
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
Pinch pepper
Pinch nutmeg

1. Preheat oven to 375º.

2. Butter 5 one-cup ramekins, then toss parmesan cheese in each ramekin to coat. Set aside.

3. In small pot melt the butter over medium heat. Once melted whisk in the flour and cook 2-3 minutes making a roux.

4. Slowly whisk in the half & half. Continue whisking and cook until thick and incorporated (3 minutes).

5. Slowly add the cheese. Remove from heat and transfer to a large bowl. Temper in the egg yolks. Season the base with salt, pepper and nutmeg. Combine well. Set aside to cool.

6. Whip the egg whites to stiff peaks but not dry. Fold 1/4 egg whites into warm base. Then add the rest. Be careful not to over mix and deflate the egg whites.

7. Spoon the mixture into prepared ramekins within ¼” of the top. Put into large deep pan and pour boiling hot water around the cups creating a water bath. Place in oven and cook for 25-30 minutes or until puffed, set in center and golden brown on top. Remove from oven and serve right away, hot in the ramekin. Or let cool slightly, then run a paring knife around the sides and unmold. At this point you can serve it warm or refrigerate up to two days. Then warm in 375 degree oven and serve.

* Serve as a first course, salad course, or a side dish.

Become a Friend or Associate Member of the
Vermont Cheese Council

As a Friend of the Vermont Cheese Council, we welcome your donations to assist us with our endeavors to improve the production and advancement of Vermont cheese. Your generous support helps us to continue to grow and expand our technical support for members, while providing you with delicious Vermont cheese. Learn more about the benefits of becoming a friend of the Council or sign up now!

As an Associate Member of the Vermont Cheese Council, we welcome all industry related businesses and individuals who see the value in having a strong cheese industry in Vermont. Learn more about the benefits of an Associate Membership on our web site.

For more information, you may contact our main office at: (866) 261-8595 or visit

This newsletter can also be viewed on our website.