Cheese News November 2012

@@  Nancy Leson of the Seattle Times wrote a glowing piece recently about Meghan McKenna, cheesemaker at Washington's Mountain Lodge Farm. I recently visited the farm, tucked into the foothills of Mt. Rainier east of Tacoma, and I have to agree, this cheesemaker is one to watch! @@  Christine Hyatt has produced a series of outstanding videos about a number of Oregon's cheesemakers. Her latest covers Liz Alvis of Portland Creamery (see here).

@@ Now open in Portland - Clay Pigeon Winery and its associated wine bar, Cyril's at Clay Pigeon. This project is the brainchild of Sasha Davies and Michael Claypool; Sasha is well known in cheese circles as an expert cheesemonger and author of The Guide to West Coast Cheese and the new The Cheesemaker's Apprentice: An Insider's Guide to the Art and Craft of Homemade Artisan Cheese, among many other things. Michael and Sasha's Cheese by Hand project chronicled their 2006 trip across the country visiting dozens of artisan cheese makers.

@@  Bandon, Oregon used to be famous for its cheese factory. The factory struggled financially though, and in 2002 the Tillamook County Creamery Association purchased the factory, later closing it. Now plans are underway to revive the legacy of cheesemaking on the southern Oregon coast - Face Rock Creamery hopes to be open by Summer 2013.

@@  It's what they call "Cyber Monday," and don't forget that you can also order cheese online as well as iPads and Xboxes... A number of the Pacific Northwest's cheesemakers offer online ordering, including Rogue Creamery, Mt. Townsend CreameryBeecher's Handmade Cheese, Tumalo Farms, and Willapa Hills Farmstead Cheese. You can also order cheese online from Oregon State University (the new Beaver Classic) and Washington State University (Cougar Gold plus several other styles). Other cheesemakers, including Little Brown Farm on Whidbey Island in Washington and Briar Rose Creamery in Oregon's wine country, host on-farm stores if you're in their area. Don't forget local cheese for the holidays!

@@  Speaking of Beecher's Handmade Cheese, word is that they're producing a new cow's milk cheese at the New York plant called Dutch Hollow Dulcet. I guess we can't really consider this a new Northwest cheese, since it's made from New York milk in a New York facility...can we?

Oregon State University Debuts Beaver Classic Cheese

The Oregon State University Creamery is up and running again, and making cheese! After an over forty year hiatus, Oregon State University released a new cheese in September. Dubbed Beaver Classic, the cheese is a rich, nutty, alpine style cheese resembling Comte or Gruyere. Best of all, Beaver Classic is now available for purchase. If you're in the Corvallis area, you can stop by Weigand Hall on Fridays from 11am to 1pm and purchase the cheese. Beaver Classic is also available at home football games (see schedule here) and word is that fresh cheese curds are available at games as well. Those of us outside the area can also buy Beaver Classic online here. Stay tuned for additional styles and flavors of cheese from the creamery.

Oregon State University is the second regional university currently making cheese - you may already be familiar with Washington State University Creamery in Pullman, Washington, famous for its Cougar Gold cheese packaged in cans. OSU Creamery operated on the Corvallis campus for many decades but closed in 1969. Food Science Professor Lisbeth Goddik has revived the creamery in recent years and it now serves as a teaching facility for Food Science Program students as well as an incubator for prospective cheesemakers looking for space to test recipes and techniques. Marc Bates, industry consultant and former creamery manager at Washington State University, is also part of the new OSU creamery management team.