toma primavera

Notes from the Vat

A new face can now be seen in our cheese caves! We’d like to welcome Malachy Egan, who will focus on affinage and wholesale sales with Paul. Malachy worked on the farm eons ago, and has worked with DiBruno Brothers most recently. And now he takes over Note From the Vat, the cheesemakers’ weekly news.

Greetings! 

As Paul mentioned last week, I’ll be taking charge of the wholesale side of things at Cherry Grove going forward. I was actually a cheese room assistant here many moons ago, so this is something of a homecoming for me. I’m looking forward to talking to you all over the coming weeks and months about the exciting stuff happening here in our little green slice of Lawrenceville. 

Even though production has shut down while we renovate our creamery (new floors!) that doesn’t mean our work has ceased. Still flipping, wrapping, cleaning to be done in the aging rooms. Also, tasting! We’ve got an exciting new tomme courtesy of cheese maker, Sean Fitzgerald. Based on a Corsican tomme recipe -using our high fat Jersey cows milk instead of sheeps milk- this little pudgy washed rind is a breath of fresh spring air. We’re calling it ‘Rarebird’ and it sports a custard-like texture in the paste and a vegetal snap towards the rind. Excited to share this limited selection with you! 

rarebird

We’ll be exhibiting at the Philly Farm & Food Fest on April 8th! It is one of the country’s biggest and best single-day food festivals and a great way to kick off the Spring season. Now in its 7th year, PF3 focuses on local farmers, artisans and regional experts in the agricultural and processing fields. Come see us at the VIP Industry Preview Hour or throughout the event. Admission is free for credentialed buyers! See more info here.
 
As always, we welcome your questions, please do not hesitate to ask. Thanks for your business and have a great weekend!
 
 
Cherry Grove Farm Cheese Availability – Week of 3/27

 
Please note: Buttercup Brie is still another few days away from readiness, so we’ll have to wait another week. In the meantime, still a bit of the Mooncakes and Raw Rodeo Brie to see us through. Full list below…
 
Rarebird
The thrush alone declares the immortal wealth and vigor that is in the forest… Whenever a man hears it he is young, and Nature is in her spring; whenever he hears it, it is a new world and a free country, and the gates of heaven are not shut against him.” – Henry David Thoreau 
Washed rind tomme. Pudding like texture with notes of hazelnut and wild asparagus.  ***LIMITED STOCK*** Raw.
 
Mooncakes Buttercup
Our classic brie but with a bit of wild blue/grey mold mingling on the fluffy white rind. The flavor is bright with notes of citrus peel. Pasteurized.
 
Raw Rodeo Brie
Lovely layered effect in the paste with a more acidic, lemon cake surrounded by a gooey mushroom-y exterior.  (Because this is raw milk you’ll find a multi-hued, mottled rind rather than the typical bone white of the typical buttercup). Raw.

 
Trilby
Beefy and pungent. Washed in Dad’s Hat Whiskey. Dense and creamy – fudgier texture than usual. Pasteurized. 
 
Herdsman
Surprisingly high moisture baskets from last September. Firmer, sharper full wheels from October. Raw.
 
Toma
Pretty sunset colors on the rind, this is an ideal batch! Grab it while you can. Raw. 
 
Havilah
Tastes range from caramelized onions and bone marrow to brown sugar and brioche. Batches from Summer 2015. Raw. 
 
Abruzze Jawn
Back for a limited time! 6 months old. Tastes like a cheesesteak – seriously. Raw. 
 

Greetings from the Cheesemakers!

As this possibly-maybe-snowmageddon bears down on us we’ve been busy trying to keep our winter wonder humidity and temps from dropping too low for the cheese. Think a lot of steaming water and contraptions to spread it around. At least we are warm! I hope all of you stay warm with some spirits and alpine cheese or tomme by the fireplace.

January and February are traditionally slower sales times of year for us, but they needn’t be. Let us know if we can help you out for a menu or give you some fondue ideas for your wintry celebrations.
 
Pictured below are the hands of us cheesemakers applying smoked salt to a few gigantic raw brie destined for The Brewer’s Plate, one of our favorite Philly events. Its about beer, cheese, and pork, all supporting the cause of local food (you’re welcome, Fair Food). 
 
Thinking of a delicious spring event certainly makes us feel less frigid.
Inline image 1
 
And on to the cheese:
Buttercup Brie: We have Brie mini wheels and a limited # of heart shaped minis in the store.
 
Herdsman: September wheels. Dense and fudgy, yet rivers of cream and butter at the same time. Mini Basket 2-4 lb wheels still available.
 
Harvest Tomme: This is our version of Herdsman, available in petite .65-1 lb baskets or 3-4 lb baskets, with the added dashing panache of ash through the middle. Perfect for those exceptional cheese boards or as easy party take homes.
 
Havilah:  Wonderful late summer 2014 batches. Grass, pineapple, hints of hazelnut and fudge, with a really great texture.
 
Toma : Wheels from last October’s milk. Notes of peanut, cream, grass, and a wonderful lasting funk. Smooth, semi-soft, buttery texture with a lovely blush hued rind.  Aged about 90 days.
 
Trilby : The second batch of our newest soft ripened washed rind cheese. 
 Beefy washed rind flavors along with olive and walnut notes and a bright apple acidity replace on the rind. (Cider-washed)

Lawrenceville Jack: 
May wheels. Grassy, mild and creamy.
 
Full Nettle Jack: Spicy oregano and lemon notes shining through from the nettles. Taste like summer.
 
Stay warm and happy snacking.

Greetings from the Make Room!

This week the cows have followed suit with the rest of the farm and are taking a bit of a break for the winter. They have switched over to a once-a-day milking regimen. So while we are making slightly smaller batches cheese, our farmer and milkers get a chance to breathe a little and focus on farm planning and prepping for spring. The cow’s benefit too by improved body condition and less stress. And with a touch less milk pouring in, we in the cheeseroom get our aging rooms in tip top shape for the spring, giving the cheeses extra attention as they age.
 

Buttercup Brie: Our Buttercup Brie should be on hand through Valentines Day, so you can plan a romantic tete a tete. Pasteurized Milk.

.
Raw Brie: Dwindling stock available. Have we mentioned how good they are? Lots of complex flavors, like a compound butter of wild mushrooms, and an aroma more powerful and appealing than our standard pasteurized brie. Hints of cream braised broccoli and cauliflower kickin’ around too. We don’t make these very often so if you want to see what all the fuss is about seize the day folks.
 
Herdsman: September wheels. Dense and fudgy yet rivers of cream and butter at the same time. Mini Basket 2-4 lb wheels still available. Raw Milk.
 
Harvest Tomme: This is our version of Herdsman, available in petite .65-1 lb baskets or 3-4 lb baskets, with the added dashing panache of ash through the middle. Perfect for those exceptional cheese boards or as easy party take homes. Raw Milk.
 
Havilah:  Wonderful late summer 2014 batches. Grass, pineapple, hints of hazelnut and fudge, with a really great texture.
 
Toma : We are extremely happy with the Toma batches that are coming out of our aging rooms and have gotten amazing feedback on them. Notes of peanut, cream, grass, and a wonderful lasting funk. Smooth, semi-soft, buttery texture with a lovely blush hued rind.  Aged about 90 days. Raw milk.
 
Trilby : The second batch of our newest soft ripened washed rind cheese. 
 Beefy washed rind flavors along with olive and walnut notes with a faint hint of cider spice. These are a bit brighter than our standard whiskey version, and hints of apple acidity replace whiskey spice on the rind. Pasteurized Milk

Lawrenceville Jack: 
May wheels. Grassy, mild and creamy. Raw Milk
 
Full Nettle Jack: Spicy oregano and lemon notes shining through from the nettles. Taste like summer.  Raw Milk
 
Thank you all for your continued support of our farm. We look forward to seeing you soon!

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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