Many of you have probably seen photos of our cheese and ramblings about a "cheese herd-share" or a "cheese CSA" on Facebook or Instagram and wondered what was going on. Well, let us fill you in, because it's been a huge leap for us this year and we just realized that we never posted about it on the blog!
Last fall our family started helping us with what turned into a pivotal project for the farm: renovating the "old barn" - transforming a dilapidated, brown recluse infested, dairy barn from the 70's into something we could actually use. Over the course of the winter my Step-Dad and Grandpa helped us create a larger space for milking as well as sanitary rooms for handling milk, cleaning equipment, and making cheese. It was a fun and special time that we'll never forget - weeks of family dinners and the satisfaction building something lasting together. A time that deserves it's own blog post! We ended up with a space that exceeded our expectations in every way and has allowed us to make our cheese available to our community - a dream come true.
In early May, not really knowing what to expect, we launched a raw milk cheese herd-share where members of the herd-share receive a portion of the herd's milk production as cheese each week. The members are actually co-owners of the goat herd. We have had an overwhelming response and are now delivering cheese to members in West Nashville, Donelson, and Murfreesboro.
Each week our members get an email telling them what their cheese of the week will be along with recipe ideas, pairings, a little bit about how the cheese was made and its history. Making such a wide variety of cheeses has been exhilarating. I love discovering the cheeses that really bring out the special qualities in our milk and the challenge of finding new ideas feeds my creative nature. Since starting distribution in May we've made everything from more well known cheeses like feta and brie to more exotic offerings like haloumi and crescenza. It has been fun to share the cheese love with our community - my secret wish is to turn our members into certifiable "curd nerds" and I think I may well be making some progress!
In addition, the herd-share format makes everything much more personal, which we've really enjoyed. All of our co-goat-owners are amazing people and we've been so lucky to meet such an incredible group of people. It's nice to be more and more a part of the community as we go along and we couldn't ask for a more welcoming bunch!