Cheese Making With a Tang of Science
There’s no sign announcing that you’ve arrived at Jasper Hill Farm, a creamery in the Northeast Kingdom, as Vermonters call that end of their state, but you can’t miss it. The main barn is painted midnight blue with a giant cheese moon and cows floating happily in space. Blasted into the hillside is a concrete bunker with seven cheese caves radiating from a central core.
There’s one other surprising detail: a modern two-room laboratory filled with microbiology equipment and staffed with scientists.
Why does a small, rural creamery invest in technology for what has long been a low-tech product? Because it doesn’t have 500 years to learn what its European counterparts already know: the biological intricacies of how to make the best cheese in a particular place. And because the same diversity of microbial cultures is not available in North America.
Published in NYT Food February 8, 2017. Read the story at NYTimes.com.