December Cheese Deals

Our Farm Focus this month is Ashbrook from Spring Brook Farm in Reading, Vt. Reg $18.99/lb. Sale $14.99/lb. Save $4.

Farms for City Kids Foundation has been educating city kids for over 20 years at Spring Brook Farm in Reading, Vermont, bringing groups of city children to the farm for a week at a time to experience a farm-based curriculum. Besides learning to take care of farm animals and helping with making maple syrup (in season), the educational mission also includes helping with the aging of cheeses. The cheesehouse is designed to allow students and visitors to view the cheese making process through windows over the make room and offers a venue for students to study economics, chemistry, microbiology, food preservation, health, and nutrition. All funds from the sale of Spring Brook cheeses support Farms For City Kids.  

After the success of their award-winning cheese, Tarentaise, Spring Brook Farm produced its first wheels of Reading in the spring of 2010.Reading is made from the fresh raw milk of the farm’s Jersey cows. Both the semi-hard Tarentaise and the semi-soft Reading are artisanal cheeses in every sense of the word, made and handled with care and love. Ashbrook is the latest creation in their line of distinguished cheeses. Ashbrook is a lightly-washed-rind cheese, inspired by the French Morbier. There is a line of vegetable ash running through the middle of the cheese, which has a semi-soft, supple texture, a bright milky flavor, and a highly aromatic and slightly nutty finish.

Cave to Co-op this month is Twig Tomme, from Twig Farm in West Cornwall, Vt. Reg $27.99/lb. Sale $19.99/lb. Save $8.

Twig Farm is owned by Michael Lee and Emily Sunderman and has been in business since 2005. The twenty-acre farm is located in West Cornwall, Vermont, about 10 miles south of Middlebury. Michael manages the herd of around 50 goats and makes and ages the cheese. Emily manages the business and marketing for Twig Farm, works as analyst for a publishing company and teaches Suzuki Violin.

Michael makes all Twig Farm cheese by hand using traditional techniques and equipment for small-scale artisan cheese production. The cheeses age in a cellar with temperature and humidity controlled environment. Before making Twig Farm cheese, Michael worked as an apprentice at Peaked Mountain Farm in Townsend, Vermont, and before that was a cheese manager at South End Formaggio in Boston, Massachusetts.

Tomme is the purest expression of Twig Farm’s goat’s milk as it changes from March to December. Aged a minimum of 90 days, this semi-firm raw-milk cheese is delicately flavored with notes of roasted almond and lemon peel. Incredibly versatile for pairing: Loire Valley Chenin, off-dry cider, a mid-weight stout or light red wine would make excellent partners for a little wedge of this goodness. Try it as part of the holiday cheese plate recipe below:

Holiday Cheese Plate w/Twig Tomme
serves 8

8 ounces Twig Tomme, cut into small triangles
quince past (membrillo) cut into small triangles to match the cheese
a small pot of chestnut honey
8 very thin slices of Serrano ham
1 small bat of dry-cured chorizo, cut into chunks
1/2 cup assorted olives
1/2 cup Marcona almonds
toasted or candied walnut
assorted crackers and flatbread
thinly sliced ripe pears

Arrange everything decoratively on a large board and serve.

Check out more great deals on cheeses in our sales flyers here