At the beginning of summer this year we had an international guest, and I picked up a few Vermont cheeses at the Brattleboro Food Coop to show off our local color. Little did I know I was facing a summer of being addicted to Vermont cheese. The cheeses I picked were SO GOOD, we ended up buying others in the same weekend, and I have been trying to make a study since then of super Vermont cheeses... when I can afford it.
I would like to share a few notes about some that I've tried so far.
Lazy Lady Farm: Sweet Emotions (cow and goat milk)
Small round brie-type cheese. Lovely texture and perfectly "brie" taste. Creamy, minimal "stinkiness." (I actually wrote "minimal pong," but I'm not sure that's a cheese term.)
Blue Ledge Farm: Plain Chèvre (goat milk)
Lovely on a cracker, this was more of a "slicer" chèvre than the "spready" type that I'm used to. Moist, small-grained texture, light goaty taste.
Scholten Family Farm: Roger's Robusto (cow milk)
I wanted to like this cheese, but it wasn't pungent enough for me. It has the texture of chèvre but not the taste. Coating it with herbs didn't really help. It would be nice for people who like very mild options though!
Jasper Hill Farm: Harbison (cow milk)
This cheese is amazing. Look, it's wrapped in bark, for one thing. It has incredible texture, heavenly taste. Nice bite, herby/grassy notes, really premium and complex. Shown here with some French Morbière, which I also fell in love with this summer. Harbison was even mentioned in Bon Appetit magazine recently.
Woodcock Farm: Summer Snow (sheep milk)
Summer Snow was the last cheese on my tasting list for the summer because I had to save up for it. It's not crazy expensive, but at about $10 for what you see here (bottom left), it's a stretch. It is deliciously piquant, soft grading to crumbly that's a lovely contrast reminiscent of boucheron. Shown here with another piece of Morbière (bottom right), as well as a hunk of "Lake's Edge" from Blue Ledge Farm (top right), which is another yummy Vermont goat's cheese I'll try to review another time.
This all has expanded my love and knowledge of Vermont cheeses 100%, and I'm very grateful and inspired. I feel like I've been missing out for years not really knowing much about these places and tastes... and this is probably just the tip of the iceberg. Exciting!