Vermont Cheese Council e-Newsletter Volume 2, Issue 4 October, 2009

Cheese News

Blue Ledge Farm Releases New Cheeses

Blue Ledge Farm is now making a custom cheese for Wasik's Cheese Shop in Wellesley, Massachusetts. It is a goat's milk cheese, aged three weeks with a layer of the famous Wasik's Chutney through the middle, lending a sweet aftertaste to this smooth, creamy cheese. It is available in Fall and Winter only at the Wasik's Cheese Shop in Wellesley.

New to Blue Ledge Farm is a raw goat's milk brie-style cheese called Dunmore. Lake Dunmore is a popular summer destination in the southern Champlain Valley, and likewise this cheese is largely made in the spring and summer months. It is wonderfully oozy under the skin, sometimes firm in the middle, and always with a powerfully tart goaty bite.

Vermont Butter & Cheese Changes Their Name to
Vermont Butter and Cheese Creamery

This year, Vermont Butter & Cheese Company (VBCC) is celebrating 25 years of cheesemaking in Vermont and the accomplishment of being a leading creamery in US artisanal cheeses. This fall, the small creamery is introducing a new name and new packaging. Read more

Vermont Cheesemakers featured in the November issue of
Martha Stewart Living

Made in Vermont
"The Green Mountain State is famous for its abundance of dairy farms, which have provided fresh, clean-tasting milk to New England for generations. Now, thanks to a new breed of farmers with sophisticated palates and mad-scientist zeal, some of these dairies are also producing delicious handcrafted cheese."

Cheesemakers mentioned: Willow Hill Farm, Consider Bardwell Farm, Thistle Hill Farm, Blue Ledge Farm, Jasper Hill Farm, Cabot, Ploughgate Creamery and Dancing Cow.

Cheese Connoisseur
wrote an article for their Fall issue called Good Neighbors Make Good Cheese:
The Vermont Cheesemaking Community

Read the whole article

Cheese Pairings

Suggested pairing from Renee Nadeau owner of
Rock Art Brewery in Morrisville, VT

"Our Vermonster beer is delicious paired with Taylor Farms Maple Smoked Gouda!"

In addition to cheese from Taylor Farm, Rock Art also sells cheese from Jasper Hill, Mt. Mansfield Creamery and Fat Toad Farm from their beautiful tasting room located right next to the brewery.


Congratulations to the Winners from the
2009 World Cheese Awards:

Gold - Vermont Butter & Cheese - Crème Fraiche [Fresh/cream cheese cow's milk plain]

Silver - Cellars at Jasper Hill - Cabot Clothbound [Traditional Cheddar made after 5/31/08]

Silver - Cabot Creamery - Vintage Choice Cheddar [Vintage creamery Cheddar made before 5/31/08]

Bronze - Willow Hill Farm - Vaquero Blue [New cheese - blue, first marketed after 01/10/08]

Bronze - Grafton Village Cheese - Classic Reserve Cheddar [Creamery Cheddar made after 5/31/08]

Bronze - Cabot Creamery - Old School (5 Yr) [Vintage creamery Cheddar made before 5/31/08]

Neighborly Farms Wins Big at Big E

The second annual Gold Medal Cheese Competition was held at the Big E in Springfield, MA. Randolph Center cheese makers from Neighborly Farms were somewhat shocked to discover that not only had their Organic Raw Milk Clothbound Cheddar taken the Gold medal in the cheddar category, but it also was awarded Best in Show. Read more...


Cabot Creamery
Open Farm Sunday

On November 1st, twenty-nine of Cabot Creamery Cooperative's farm family owners will welcome visitors to tour their farms from 11am to 2pm. Visitors will experience the family traditions and local flavors that are Cabot Cheese when local farmers “open their barn doors” for Open Farm Sunday. Guests of all ages are invited to meet the farmers, see their cows, join in barnyard activities and of course sample Cabot Cheddar Cheese!

Names and locations of the participating farms across New England and upstate NY will be online October 23 at and an optional virtual farm tour will be available online at

35th Winter Fancy Food Show

January 17-19, 2010
Moscone Center, San Francisco

Autumn New Wine Festival at
Shelburne Vineyard

November 7th 11:00 am - 5:00 pm
Shelburne Vineyard Tasting Room,
Rt. 7, Shelburne, VT

Come meet our new wines!
With free wine tastings all day and fabulous local food pairings, this is the ultimate localvore destination for a true taste of place. Find your perfect combination of wine, handmade VT cheeses, crusty bread, patés, game, artisan chocolates and more.

Cheese Loves Beer #7
American Flatbread / Zero Gravity Brewing

November 8th 1:00 pm
Co-hosted by Ruth Miller "Beer and Cheese Maven" and Head Brewer Paul Sayler, (Reservation only)

Highlights from Past Events

Craft Producers

The Vermont Cheese Council attended the Craft Producer’s Festivals in Manchester and Stowe in October and sold Vermont cheese plates and offered beer and cheese seminars. Donating cheesemakers included Cabot Creamery, Crowley Cheese, Fat Toad Farm, the Cellars at Jasper Hill, Mt. Mansfield Creamery, and Vermont Butter and Cheese Creamery. Thanks, this was a great fundraiser for the council!
Check out our recommended pairings.

Vermont Brewer's Association

The Vermont Brewer’s Associations sponsored a Vermont artisanal cheese and craft brew pairing at Ottercreek/Wolaver’s as a thank you to the Vermont Brewer’s Festival volunteers.

The Vermont Life Wine and Harvest Festival took place from September 25th-27th in the Mount Snow Valley and surrounding area. Over 1,700 people attended this incredible event and many attendees commented on how wonderful the cheesemakers were. Participating cheesemakers included Taylor Farm, Grafton Village Cheese, Maplebrook Farm and Vermont Butter and Cheese Creamery. To top it off, Jon Wright from Taylor Farm spoke to an interested audience about cheesemaking in Vermont.

Cheesemaking Classes

Cheesemaking with Peter Dixon at
Consider Bardwell Farm West Pawlet, VT

December 16-17, 2009
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.

January 4-5, 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 (Chaource and Fromage Blanc) and Tomme; cheese brining; cheese ripening; and financial and marketing information.

To register contact Peter Dixon at Tel. 802-387-4041 or e-mail,

Peter Dixon 2-Day Cheesemaking Class

October 22-23, 2009
Mount Mansfield Creamery, Morrisville, Vermont

The two-day class will be a combination of hands-on cheese making and short lectures on cheesemaking and affinage (the process of cheese aging). Topics include starting up a creamery; properties of cow and goat milk and their use in cheese making; choosing starter cultures and rennet; making lactic curd and Tomme-style cheeses; cheese brining; cheese aging; and information about equipment and facilities.

To register and for information about lodging contact Stan Biasini, cheesemaker and owner of Mount Mansfield Creamery. Tel. 802-888-7686 or email:

The Vermont Institute for Artisan Cheese Classes

Cheese Chemistry
November 2 and November 3, 2009

Starter Cultures
November 4, 2009

Basic Sensory Evaluation
November 5, 2009

Advanced Sensory Evaluation
November 16, 2009

Risk Reduction Practices for Cheesemakers
November 17, 2009

Cheese Defects
November 18, 2009

Affinage: Behind the Scenes
November 19 -November 20, 2009

For more details on these and more classes, visit VIAC's website

Recipe of the Month

Fall is here think warming soups!

Vermont Cheddar Ale Soup

By Courtney Contos, Executive Chef for Cook Academy

Serves 6

1 large onion (1 1/2 cups)
1 medium carrot, cut into 1/4-inch dice (1/2 cup)
1 celery ribs, cut into 1/4-inch dice (1/2 cup)
2 teaspoons finely chopped garlic
1 bay leaf
1/2 stick (1/4 cup) unsalted butter
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
2 cups whole milk
1 3/4 cups chicken broth
1 (12-oz) bottle ale such as Bass
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon dry mustard
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 lb extra-sharp Cheddar (grated (4 cups)
*Find a list of Vermont cheddars
4 bacon slices (3 1/2 oz total), cooked and crumbled

Heat a medium heavy pot over moderate heat. Add butter. When butter is melted and hot add onions, carrots, celery, garlic, and bay leaf, stirring occasionally, until vegetables begin to soften, about 5 minutes.

Reduce heat to moderately low and sprinkle flour over vegetables, then cook, stirring occasionally, 3 minutes. Add milk, broth, and beer in a stream, whisking, then simmer, whisking occasionally, 5 minutes. Stir in Worcestershire sauce, mustard, salt, and pepper. Bring to a boil. Then lower heat.

Add cheese by handfuls, stirring constantly, and cook until cheese is melted, 3 to 4 minutes (do not boil). Discard bay leaf.

Serve sprinkled with bacon and serve hot.

Makes 6 servings

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 and Wine Sellers
Dakin Farm- What Vermont Tastes Like
Equinox Resort and Spa
Hanover and Lebanon Co-op Food Stores
Harvest Market
Healthy Living
Middlebury Natural Foods Co-op
Mountain Cheese and Wine
Mountain Greens Market and Deli
Newport Specialty Foods
Peter Dixon Dairy Consulting
Provisions International
Ren Hen Cafe and Bakery
South Royalton Market
Stratton Mountain Provisions
Sugarbush Farm
Sweet Clover
The Cellars Group
The Cheese House
The Cheese Shop/ Wasiks
The Wine and Cheese Depot
Upper Valley Food Coop
Vermont Cheesemongers
Woodstock Farmer's Market


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