Saturday, August 13, 2011

Cheese in The Heart of Texas

Here's an idea that is sure to impress at your next dinner party. How about building a cheese plate for your friends out of all local, award winning cheese handcrafted by you?!

Pure Luck, run by Amelia Sweethardt and her husband Ben Guyton, is a 50 acre dairy and organic farm-- their line of cheeses are produced entirely from the milk of a herd of cute Nubian and Alpine goats wandering about their fields. The Dripping Springs farm is the family's home, and has been since the late 1970s.

The dairy puts out a variety of types, from fresh Chevre (with a range of added herbs and spices) to the complex Sainte Maure, whose refined texture and subtle flavors will make you think immediately of the great goat cheeses of the Loire Valley, where the style originated. Pure Luck also makes goat's milk Feta and a blue cheese, which can be hard to find unless you frequent the farmer's markets of Central Texas.

The family is pleased to teach visitors how to milk the goats by hand, encouraging samples of the fresh, sweet milk, and make their own cheese at their workshops!
All workshop participants will make and take home their own cheeses, including Chevre, Feta, Del Cielo, and Ste. Maure. From milking a goat to wrapping your finished cheese, they cover basic cheesemaking techniques, dairy goat care, and sanitation practices.

Pure Luck's cheese has accumulated numerous accolades, earning awards and attention year after year. In fact, her Hopeless Bleu has taken home American Cheese Society awards five years in a row. No wonder it’s rumored that President Obama noshed on Pure Luck cheeses on his recent visit to Austin.

Once you bring your freshly made cheese home, serve it up on a Texas shaped cheese board! Awesome!

Texas Brings Home ACS Ribbons!

Texan Cheesemakers Make us Proud at American Cheese Society 2011 Competition!

Go Texan Cheesemakers! Woohoo! You rocked the American Cheese Society annual competition! For those who haven't heard how the competition works, imagine a dog show in which dogs compete in breed classes. Then those winners go on to the Best in Show judging. And that's how it works! This year, American cheeses were entered into 106 categories (out of a potential 109) and there were a total of 1676 cheeses entered into the competition! So back to those Texan Cheesemakers making us proud... As they have every year since entering, Pure Luck Farm and Dairy out of Dripping Springs took home prizes - two second place ribbons for Hopelessly Bleu and Basket Molded Chevre. Dallas Mozzarella Company won a 1st place for its Hoja Santa Goat Cheese and a 3rd place for the Queso Blanco with Chiles. Three Happy Cows, a newer producer in the Dallas area, took home the third place ribbon in their category, when both their Plain Drinkable Yogurt and Blueberry Drinkable Yogurts tied. Eagle Mountain Farmhouse Cheese out of Granbury won first place for its Birdville Reserve. (John even high jacked a piece to bring back to the shop!) And lastly, Brazos Valley Cheese, based just south of Waco, took home three ribbons! Their Bandaged Cheddar won a 3rd place, their Brie a 2nd place, and their Eden a 1st place. (Not all our Texan Cheesemakers entered cheeses into the competition, but we hope this inspires them to do so next year!) Thank you, thank you, thank you Texas Cheesemakers! Not only do you make us proud and delight our taste buds, but we know you also work tirelessly and endlessly - weathering the drought and caring for your animals, maintaining clean working environments to produce high quality milk, pouring your heart and soul into making good cheese, and watching over it like a baby as it matures. In fact, we owe sincere appreciation and gratitude towards all artisanal Cheesemakers, who daily produce labors of love that we get to enjoy. Thank you.

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