Cheese produced in the Berkshires is a favorite among locals and chefs, and they're placed in markets nationally because of outstanding quality and taste. We highly recommend the cheeses listed below - many have been awarded for excellence by the American Cheese Society, the New York State Fair Dairy Competition and more.
RAWSON BROOK FARM
(See interview & photos with Susan Sellew.)
Susan Sellew milks her Alpine goats twice daily from late March through December, and the soft chevre she produces comes in three varieties: Original, Chives and Garlic, and Thyme and Olive Oil. Monterey Chevre is a favorite among chefs, and you'll see it featured on menus in the best restaurants in the Berkshires - it's excellent in salads, omelettes, savory entrees and desserts. Rawson Brook Farm has been making chevre since 1984, and the chefs know it well and praise it highly. Monterey Chevre is distributed nationally (a favorite at Zabars) and locally at Guido's and Co-op.
OLD CHATHAM SHEEPHERDING COMPANY
(See interview/photos at the farm here.)
The Old Chatham Sheepherding Company is the largest sheep farm in North America, with 250-300 sheep in the milking parlor every day. Their farm land in the rolling hills of Old Chatham is ideal for pasturing animals, and in a small building on the property they make sheep milk cheese, sheep and cow milk cheese, and yogurt. The cheeses are all excellent: Ewe's Blue creamy Roquefort style, Kinderhook Creek soft ripened cheese made with 100% pasteurized sheep's milk, an award-winning Hudson Valley Camembert and Fresh Ricotta. The yogurt is just sheep milk and culture, and their Maple Yogurt is our favorite. 155 Shaker Museum Road, Old Chatham, NY/ (518) 794-7733/ blacksheepcheese.com
3-CORNER FIELD FARM
(See interview/photos with Karen Weinberg here.)
Karen Weinberg and Paul Borghard are the farmers of 3-Corner Field Farm in Shushan, NY. With more than 150 sheep and over 300 lambs, fresh cheese is made in batches each week. Favorites include Shusan Snow, which is similar to camembert; Sheep's Milk Feta, including a feta marinated in olive oil and herbs; Frere Fumant, an American Cheese Society winner; Battenkill Brebis, another American Cheese Society winner; Sheep's Milk Ricotta; and American Cheese Society winner Brebis Blanche. The farm also produces lamb and sheep goods, including sheep's milk cheeses and yogurts, pasture-fed lamb, yarn, sheep and lamb skins and soap. Karen and Paul can be found at farmers markets in the region, including the Greenmarket in New York City. For more information see dairysheepfarm.com.
RUBINER'S CHEESEMONGERS & GROCERS
We always look forward to receiving Matt Rubiner's newsletter, 'The Things We Carry', so we've chosen some of our favorite quotes and images. Chef Alfred Portale if Gotham Bar & Grill in New York City says the following about Rubiner's in Find.Eat.Drink: "I like to go to Rubiner's Cheesemongers and Grocers. I go here for all my cheese and charcuterie supplies. The owner is Matt Rubiner and he is a very accomplished cheesemonger." READ MORE