Abruzze Jawn

Notes From The Vat, Holiday Edition

Happy Holiday Season Quesophiles!

‘Tis the season of giving and for cheese, and for that reason we have a gift for you!

From now through January 1st, you can get our Havilah, a Good Food awards finalist, at a holiday gift price, because it is the season to celebrate with cheese! We want you to enjoy our flagship cheese, made in summer when the cows are grazing fresh, green grasses, on all your holiday cheese boards.

Melt Havilah into your turkey day mashed potatoes, wrap a wedge and stuff it in the stocking of the curd nerd in your life, grate it up and mix it into your Hanukkah latkes, or bring it to your holiday celebrations this season. Havilah pairs well with ports, passitos, and iceweins, with malty beers, and bourbon or whisky in those dark days of winter by a cozy fire.

What is in the store and at markets?

Toma
The new batch of our Toma is dense and rich, with a flavorful rustic rind. These wheels have layers of flavors, with notes of creme fraiche, fresh yogurt, sweet vanilla, and undertones of toasted almond, grass, and mild earthy hints, bordering on mushroomy. With a little more acidity, this batch is a unique departure from a more traditional Toma flavor profile that will work well for both cooking and serving in cheese plates. RAW milk. On sale from now to January first.

Rarebird
Our raw milk Rarebird wheels are fudgy-creamy in texture, with a sweet custardy aroma and flavor. Always deliciously palate-coating, we taste hints of fresh bread and sweet cream with some of the same sweet fall fruit notes of the last batch, and notes of anise and brown butter to boot! Rarebird is always a great addition to a cheeseboard. RAW milk.

Buttercup Brie
Just in time for the holidays, this American Cheese Society Blue Ribbon winner is back. And what is a holiday cheeseboard without brie? Rich and silky with earthy mushroom and butter flavors. Pairs well with caramelized nuts and dried fruits. PASTEURIZED milk.

Havilah
We have a range of summer and fall batches from 2018, ranging from 14 to 16 months aged.

And did you hear our news?  Havilah and our Havilah Reserve are finalists in the Good Food awards! The Good Food Awards not only judge taste, but take into account sustainability so this is an honor for our farm, especially since we were competing against some much bigger operations!

These wheels are dense and velvety, and the layers of flavors keep coming once you take a bite. You will experience notes of braised carrots and asparagus, caramelized onion, slow cooked pork, and earthy mushrooms. There are tiny hints of garlic & onion, as well as a herbaceous undertone. These batches also boast a wonderful level of crystallization, so they really pop. RAW milk. On sale from now to January first.

What is in the store only?

You can still find our Lawrenceville Jack and ACS Blue Ribbon winning Jack Reserve in our cases. Also on hand is some Herdsman and Harvest Tomme, some superbly ripe Trilby and a limited amount of Abruzze Jawn.

Planning for your holidays? Look for one final batch of Abruzze  Jawn and Trilby in mid-December.

We are also selling beautiful oil-finished walnut cheese boards handmade from reclaimed wood about 50 minutes from our farm.

Ask our store and cheesemaking staff for suggestions for your holiday cheeses and pairings!

Notes from the Vat

Trilby washed in Dad's Hat Rye whiskey ageing in the caves
Trilby washed in Dad’s Hat Rye whiskey ageing in the caves

We’ve got another tasty batch of Rarebird this week, as well as a limited number of Trilby and Buttercup Brie wheels this week.

Farm Markets are still in full swing and the farm store has been bustling. Here are the cheeses we are featuring this week.

Toma
We let this little rustic raw milk farmhouse Toma batch get a bit of extra age, making it extra special! These wheels boast a delectably dense and creamy texture. Each bite of these buttery wheels melts in your mouth, bursting with layers of grassy notes and hints of fall fruits and salted nuts, alongside roasted malt and fresh sea salt with a wonderfully subtle minerality running through all the stronger notes that really ties this flavorful batch together. Raw Milk...

Trilby
This new batch of Trilby is incredible. These wheels offer  a soft, supple texture with a luscious creamline, and flavor to boot! These little Trilbies give off an aroma of cocoa with a rind carrying just a hint of hoppiness, thanks to the Dad’s Hat Rye Whiskey they are washed in. Inside at the creamy center of the cheese, you’ll get notes of earthiness, and autumnal fruit flavors like crisp apples and pears. Make a space on your fall cheese board for these little guys! Pasteurized milk.

Rarebird
The raw milk Rarebird in this batch are dense with a sweet custardy aroma. These wheels carry some of the same sweet fall fruit flavors of the last batch, with added notes of anise-y black licorice and brown butter. The texture is creamy and palate-coating, with some hints of fresh bread and sweet cream rounding out the flavor profile. These Rarebirds would make a welcome addition to any cheesboard, and happen to make a great snack with sliced tart apples or crisp pears. Raw milk.

Havilah
These latest batches of Havilah are really lovely. Cracking the wheels open, stocky vegetal aromas waft up to greet you, and the lovely golden color of the paste says summer gold. These wheels are dense and flakey, with flavors of broiled carrots, caramelized shallots, roasted nuts, and hearty beefy stews and those subtler notes of brown sugar, caramel, and a tiny hint of vanilla near the finish. Raw milk.

Herdsman
These six month old winter Herdsman baskets start off with notes of cultured butter and creme fraiche, lemony citrus, and fresh sea salt, finishing off with hints of toasted cashew, caramel, and a bit of sharpness. This batch is firm and flakey, very versatile – equally great for snacking or for cooking! Raw milk

Abruzze Jawn
In the farm store only! Our savory Abruzze Jawn will be very limited for awhile, while batches ripen in the caves. This creamy raw milk jack-style curd is blended with mild red pepper, ancho, pepperoncini, guajillo, pimenton (smoked paprika), green peppercorn, onion, and garlic. Aged 6 months, the smoky sweet spice blend imparts a distinct meaty flavor. Grate over cornbread, or atop your squash soup. Delicious on a grass-fed beef or black bean burger. Addictively spiced, but without heat. Raw milk.

Our creamy, tangy Lawrenceville Jack and small supply of Jack Reserve are also available in the farm store.

Notes From The Vat

Our little booze-soaked jewels of Trilby are back!

Our farm store cases and farm market coolers will be filled with some long awaited returns, and some of our usual suspects!

Trilby
These little washed rind wheels are a delicious exploration of the terroir of Cherry Grove Farm. This seasonal cheese begins with the milk from our cows grazing lush summer pasture, and then spends its aging time being carefully washed in Dad’s Hat Rye Whiskey, which is made from local rye grains in Bristol, just 20 miles from our farm.

A few weeks before the Trilby is ready to sell, we visit a chestnut tree and a fig tree on the farm to hand pick the prettiest leaves, which will be blanched and soaked in that beautiful booze for a few weeks. Once ready, each little Trilby will be carefully hand wrapped for its journey home with you.

Everything about this little cheese, from start to finish, is hyper-local and handmade, making these washed-rind wheels the encapsulation of summertime on our farm and our region. Flavors are funky, boozy, and beefy, with notes of buttermilk and a fudgy-creamy texture. Pasteurized milk.

Ooooooooooumammi
Ooooumammi is also back and ready to take its place on your summertime cheese board. This cheese is a love child between a vegetal brie and an earthy tomme – the mottled rind on these raw milk wheels is just the beginning of the beauty that is Ooooooumammi. Underneath that dappled bloomy rind lies a rich creamline and a dense center paste packed with flavor. Earthy, funky flavors of mushroom and root vegetables are balanced by notes of salted butter, savory meats, and even hints of anise near the finish. Raw milk.

Havilah
These raw aummer milk Havilah wheels, boast layers and layers of flavors thanks to our diverse grassy pastures. These batches have a dense, flakey texture with lots of that wonderful crystallization near the rind. Hearty, stocky aromas greet you as you open the wheel, and when you take a bite, you get beefy notes of broiled potatoes and slow-cooked vegetable stock, plus sweeter notes of hazelnut, salted caramel, and vanilla.

Pairs well with deep flavors like dark berries and plums. Try with Le Bon Magot’s Tomato White Sultana chutney. Raw milk.

Rarebird
Rarebird wheels are particularly special because this cheese is made with the milk of just one day’s milking. Being on the younger side, these little washed-rind wheels are a perfect snapshot of our terrior on that one summer day – the fresh grasses our cows were eating, the weather around us, our dedicated cheesemaking choices – and how each influenced the flavors of our luscious, fresh grass milk.

These wheels have a soft, sweet cream aroma and a dense, palate-coating texture that just about melts in your mouth. The flavors of this batch are simple and clean – wonderful notes of salted butter and fresh baked bread, with a tiny bit of that lovely washed-rind funk near the creamline. At the finish, a tinge of sweetness brings notes of almond and subtle hints of grassiness. Raw milk.

Herdsman
We have two batches to share at markets and in the store this week. We are still finishing late autumn batches of extra-aged Herdsman baskets that start off with notes of cultured butter, lemony citrus, and fresh sea salt, and finish with hints of toasted cashew, and a bit of sharpness, that can be reminiscent of clothbound cheddars. Firm and flakey, these extra-aged batches are very versatile, great for snacking or for cooking!

We also cracked open a large wheel of a Herdsman that was made with local beer added into the paste. Aged in a large format wheel these batches have a rich, creamy texture and bright notes of citrus and sea salt with the tang of hoppy cream. A nice pairing with Eat This tomato jalapeno marmalade or some sweet and spicy Three Monkey Mustard. Raw milk.

Abruzze Jawn Our savory Abruzze Jawn is back! This creamy raw milk jack-style curd is blended with mild red pepper, ancho, pepperoncini, guajillo, pimenton (smoked paprika), green peppercorn, onion, and garlic. Aged 6 months, the smoky sweet spice blend imparts a distinct meaty flavor. Grate over cornbread, or atop your squash soup. Delicious on a grass-fed beef or black bean burger. Addictively spiced, but without heat. Raw milk.

Notes from the Vat

Hello friends in cheese! 

Hope everyone has recovered from those tryptophan trips. It’s time to reset those cheese cases and cheeseboards with care and abundance for the holidaze joy!

It a mild day here in Lawrenceville, as our cheese elves enjoy this brief respite from the frigid weather to make a batch of Toma that will ripen for February’s chill. A belated reminder that all our farm elves here at Cherry Grove are grateful for your support this holiday season.

What’s In Our Cases?

OOOOUUMAMMI
Beautiful soft ripened mixed rind tomme/brie hybrid. The paste in most wheels is about 1/2-2/3 broken down, meaning the texture is extremely decadent, smooth and buttery. (Think foie gras minus the baaaad karma.) The flavors and aromas we’re getting from these wheels range from: buttered hen of the woods mushrooms, chicken stock, damp earth, and roasted brassicas. Purrfect with turkey in leftover turkey and cranberry sammies. Raw Milk.

Abruzze Jawn
The supply in the farm store now will last through the holidaze. Get it while you can. Abruzze Jawn is a popular choice for any cheese platter with its sweet and smoky peppery flavors.

Buttercup Brie
Nice supply of our ever-popular winter white brie in the farm store through New Years Eve.Pasteurized.

Herdsman
Nice selection from the 1st week of September. These have some nice creaminess to them, where we like them. Some basket cuts and small rounds for slicing into bite sized wedges and rounds. Great for a cheese plate! Raw Milk.

Harvest Tomme
Speaking of baskets, a wee supply of this one, a variation of Herdsman with ash through the middle. This batch is distinctly cheddar-y, but with a squeeze of lemon & horseradish. Raw MIlk.

Toma
Bright grass milk paste with equally bright fall fruit flavors and a roasted malty flavor on the rind. Beautiful creamsicle colors and a raclette-like texture. Into our August wheels, we should have a nice supply of this through the holidaze. Raw Milk.

Rarebird
As delicious as ever. Come and get this pleasantly funky washed-rind beaut. A soul warming eyeopener for those holiday cheeseboards, with an Old Fashioned chaser. At least that’s how our gathering will play it. Raw Milk.

Havilah and Havilah Reserve
This aged alpine cheese is one of our most popular cheeses, and sales have been so brisk that it will became a truly seasonal cheese. Havilah is only made in summer, when the cows are on grass. Then each wheel ripens over 12 to 15 months before leaving the caves and debuting at market. A few wheels are held and aged to 24 months to become our Reserve. This year, we will sell out of all our 2017 Havilah wheels sometime in early January. So get this cheese board star while you can. A limited supply of Reserve will be released in December. Raw Milk.

Lawrenceville Jack and Jack Reserve
Lawrenceville Jack is a farm favorite showing all the seasonal qualities of our grass fed cows’ milk. A limited number of Reserve wheels will be cut for sale during the holidays. Raw Milk.

Stay dry and afloat during our winter storms!

As always, thank you for your support.

Paul and the team

Holiday Notes from the Vat

Kohlrabi the cow says to eat more cheese.!
Hello, hello. Ho Ho Ho. Happy holidays. Its the countdown to Christmas (and New Years)! 

Hopefully, this finds you adequately egg-nogged and ready to face what is undoubtedly one of the busiest times of the year. But fret not, we have some deliciously special holiday offerings to share with you, your friends, and loved ones. Give a warm season’s greetings to the return of Rarebird and Bette Davis Eyes!

 

 

CHEESE! CHEESE! CHEESE! 

The Unctuous Rarebird

Rarebird: The cheese that definitely keeps on giving! First of all, the paste is unctuously buttery, it literally melts in your mouth. AND THE FLAVOR! Our tasting notes include everything from beef stock and mushrooms to shell fish and broccoli rabe. Every bite offers something different with flavors about as episodic as Star Wars. This is a beautifully complex batch that’ll go perfectly with everything Holiday. Raw.

Buttercup Brie: The return of everyone’s favorite. Grassy, buttery, decadent! Why be nice when you can be naughty? Pasteurized.

Mooncakes, Mooncakes, 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 cavey-mushroomy, it’s like going spelunking in a cavern with pleasing mushrooms and sea of butter underneath you. Mhmmmm….sea of butter.  Pasteurized.

Toma Birra
Similar to Herdsman but with a frat party, hoppy-edge from the lager used in the wash. Sharp n sweet, flaky texture. Late June milk, a lil slice of summer party. Raw Milk.

blue-veined cheese

A rustic blue, our Bette Davis Eyes

Bette Davis Eyes
This is a decidedly rustic blue. Did someone say Ovaltine?! Fudgy texture with a host of malty notes and overtones of earthiness and slate. This would be great partner to the dark beers of winter or a port wine.  Try on a broiled cheesey toast with mushrooms and thyme.
Raw Milk.

 

Herdsman
Available now in petite, personal-sized wheels made in late July. They’re dense and cheddary in texture, with that nutty, grassy tang that everyone loves about Herdsman. A little taste of summer to brighten up the impending chill. Notes of candied lemon and horseradish. Raw milk. 

Havilah
This cheese just gets better and better over the years. Pictured below are some tasting notes from recent Official Tasting Panels. Raw Milk.

 

Full Nettle Jack, Lawrenceville Jack, Jack Reserve, and what will likely be your only week chance at Abbruzze Jawn till May/June.
HOOO HOOO HOOOO! Merry Christmas and Happy Jack. The rare and the illusive make a special Holiday appearance for one week (maybe two) only. Get them while you can for your  holiday cheese plates, or you’ll start the new year full of regret. Raw Milk.


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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