farmstead cheese

News From the Vat

Dearest Quesophiles,
 
In light of current events, let me share with you this excellent 1988 Eagles ditty: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hlR6ujpB89k

Winter is the time for farm and creamery planning and reflection. So while we inch along at 32 gallons a day right now, we are anticipating upwards of 125 gallons a day in the summer. That’s a lot of Havilah’s for 2019/20 and more tommes, Rarebirds, and Buttercups for this season too!

Here’s a picture of some winter foliage from the farmyard.

But now, what is on our cheese board this week!

Trilby: Everyone’s favorite boozy little stinker. This is the last week or two on this batch, then they go away for a month. (In case you’ve forgotten, Trilby is a small format cheese washed in Dad’s Hat delicious Rye Whiskey). No leaves on them this time of year, sorry. But still big, bold, sweet, vegetal, boozy and complex. Pasteurized milk.                            

Sugarcube (or Batch 328): This is an experimental mixed rind cheese with a line of ash through the middle for all the drama. May it bring a sweet light to your darkest winter. Pasteurized milk.



Mooncakes! A wilder, limited version of our Buttercup Brie. It features a smorgasbord of penicillium mold strains in addition to the pure-white that we’re accustomed to. PLUS, we’ve added a dash of vegetable ash mixed with a delicate dusting of smoked paprika in the background. What you’ve got here is the unctuous butteriness of our standard Buttercup plus an intriguingly earthy, mushroomy, vegetal finish. Distinctly cave-y, mushroomy, it’s like going spelunking in a cavern with pleasing mushrooms and sea of butter underneath you. Mmmmm….sea of butter.  Pasteurized milk.

Buttercup Brie: Petite but powerful wheels from November with notes of fresh hay, butter cooked oyster mushrooms and beef – vintage gems! Quarters from our large Buttercups, beautifully rumpled, very luxe n creamy with notes of buttermilk n creme fraiche. Pasteurized milk.

Bette Davis Eyes
A new batch, decidedly far better and creamier than the last. Sean continues in heroic efforts to hone in on this lil number. Now for our 2018 resolution: wood shelves! Mad fudgy, gorgonzola-esque, mint garden and light mineral earthiness. 8-10# wheels Raw milk.

Herdsman
Available now are our early November batches. Very creamy, stone-fruit and lactic aromas, classic tomme flavors. Favorite comment in French accent last week at a Whole Foods event “this reminds me of tomme de savoie, I’ll take it!” Notes of candied lemon and horseradish. Raw milk.

Havilah
August and Sept 2016 batches. This cheese just gets better and better over the years. Current tasting notes include: butterscotch, broth, grass, caramelized onions, and of course: Butter. Raw milk.

 Toma
REALLY nice October batch – the rind is can’t miss plethora of roasted nut flavors. Slight paste break-down underneath the beautifully sunset hued rind. Endlessly snackable, crowd pleasing, meltable with a pleasant lemony zip and savory finish. Raw milk.

A brief plug for an awesome event we will be at, The Evening of Cheese at the Cheesemakers Resource Conference, 6 PM Tues Feb 13th. If you are a chef/buyer and want to taste the cheese of and talk to an array of Midatlantic regional cheesemakers all in one room, here is the perfect way to see what’s up! Come hungry. About an hour from Philly and right down the road from Stoudts brewing.
http://www.dairyheritage.com/evening-of-cheese.php

Always grateful for your support.

Paul Lawler, Head Cheesemaker

Notes From The Vat

Are you all recovered from your tryptophan trippin’ and accepting into your life the ceaseless churn of Dominic the Donkey and White Christmas on retail repeat for the next 5 weeks?
 
In all earnestness, this is the most magical cheese season of the year and you can’t not love it. Parties galore, evenings with friendships and warming tannic wines, cider, stouts, toddies, or an old fashioned by the fire – all you need is a cheese pairing or plate to bring the glow to any of these evenings.

Consider our Havilah with a cider on the sweeter side, or with that old fashioned. Better still perhaps caramelize some onions with cider and back with thinly sliced potatoes adorned with Rarebird. Everyone always lumps Chardonnay with bloomies, but how about a nice stout with our Mooncakes? In any case, the days may be getting shorter, but that’s all the more reason to embrace the holiday and EAT MORE CHEESE!
 

CHEESE! CHEESE! CHEESE! 

 


Mooncakes, Mooncakes, Mooncakes!

Our friendly blue and light grey penicilliums and few errant blues decided to visit our bloomy room and what a gift they gave us! Mooncakes is essentially our Buttercup, but with non-pure snow white rind and a changed aroma. Distinctly cave-y, mushroomy, it’s like going spelunking in a cavern with pleasing mushrooms and sea of butter underneath you. Mhmmmm….sea of butter. We’ve added some ash to these to give them greater visual  Also, tiny lil third pounders available too in addition to standard brie sizes. Pasteurized milk.

Havilah
August/Sept 2016 batches. Sweet and pinneaple-y aromas, but flavors of a beefy sunday roast with Yorkshire pudding. Raw milk.

Toma
VERY LIMITED. Beautiful pinkish orange shaded wheels, nice and beefy, roasted peanut and cashew flavors. Perfect for melting or snacking. Raw milk.

We will also have Lawrenceville Jack, Full Nettle Jack, and Buttercup Brie in the farm store. Look for some intriguing releases a little closer to the holidays!

Rough Seas of Curds n Whey

Hello all,
 
The curds n whey are in full swing now! 100+gallons a day is keeping us busy.
See the rough seas of Havilah curd below and a full brine tank. We are nearly at peak.
The usual lineup of cheeses this week….
 
Inline image 1
 
Buttercup Brie: Late May wheels. Slow to ripen but rewarding with classic grassy milk flavors, mushroom and cultured butterPasteurized.
 
Herdsman: Basket wheels are firm, around 6+ months old and full of flavor. Raw Milk.
 
Havilah: Autumn 2014 batches. Grass, pineapple, hints of hazelnut and fudge, with a really great texture. Raw Milk.
 
Lawrenceville Jack: November wheels. Grassy, mild and creamy. Raw Milk.
 
Happy cooking, and a lovely summer day to you all!
Thanks for your support.
 
Paul Lawler,
Head Cheesemaker

Dearest Quesophiles

The calves continue to roll in and we are seeing the first tricklings in new milk flow. We’ve primarily been making Abruzze Jawn and Buttercup Brie, but as it takes 6 months for Abruzze to age, you’ll be tasting these summer milk beauties come the holidays. There it is below at day 3, drying without much of a rind.
   
Inline image 1

Abruzze Jawn, aged 3 days

On to the Cheese:
 
Buttercup Brie: Some nice early May wheels. That typical butter and buttermilk soft deliciousness with hints of mushroom on the rind. .
 
Herdsman: Basket wheels are firm, around 6+ months old and full of flavor. Raw Milk.
 
Havilah: Autumn 2014 batches. Grass, pineapple, hints of hazelnut and fudge, with a really great texture. Raw Milk.
 
Lawrenceville Jack: November wheels. Grassy, mild and creamy. Raw Milk.
 
Full Nettle Jack: Spicy oregano and lemon notes shining through from the nettles. Spring and summer wheels.  Raw Milk.

Honeysuckle Arrives

Our avalanche of calves has started to hit! We have had 9 new calves born this week, with a possible 10th on the way today. Our milk supply will be starting to increase drastically, and we are looking forward to making the larger batches of cheese that characterize summer on a grass fed diary farm. The farmers have starting cutting hay this week, and all of our markets are in full swing. Oh yes, it is certainly the beginning of the busy season around here, and we are all eager to starting working hard to produce some great future cheese for you all. 

Here is one of our new calves, Honeysuckle, enjoying a leisurely morning in the grass. 
 

Available Cheese This Week:
 
Buttercup Brie: Some nice early May wheels. That typical butter and buttermilk soft deliciousness with hints of mushroom on the rind. Mini wheels also available.
 
Herdsman: Regular wheels from Mid January, Basket wheels a little older. Great flavors abound. January wheels are creamy, flaky, with a sour cream finish. Raw Milk.
 
Havilah:  Wonderful August and Sept 2014 batches. Grass, pineapple, hints of hazelnut and fudge, with a really great texture. Raw Milk.
 
Lawrenceville Jack: November wheels. Grassy, mild and creamy. Raw Milk 
 
Full Nettle Jack: Spicy oregano and lemon notes shining through from the nettles. Spring and summer wheels. Raw Milk 
 
Enjoy this beautiful weekend.
 
Paul
 

1902 - Family purchased farm

1910 - Leased land to dairy farmer

1987 - Hamill Brothers inherit farm

2002 - Started as a family business

2003 - Started a beef herd, laying hens, and pigs

2004 - Added sheep and attained organic certification of pasture land

2005 - Added dairy herd and began making fresh cheeses like mozzarella

2006 - Built aging caves and began making aged cheeses

2012 - Grid Magazine’s Cheese of the Month (Nov – Full Nettle Jack); Finalist at the Good Food Awards (Toma)

2013 - Won 2 blue ribbons from the American Cheese Society(for Buttercup Brie and Lawrenceville Jack Reserve); Added second cheesemaker

2014 - Broke ground on additional aging space and began process of getting AWA certification for our chickens
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