In 2015, we started bringing in small-batch, artisan cheeses a couple of times a month. We’re calling it our Special Delivery program: we bring in a limited amount of these amazing cheeses and sell them at a crazy-good price. When they’re gone, they’re gone, but not to worry, there’ll be something else on the way. Be sure to stop by our cheese counters to find out what Special Delivery we’ve received lately.
This month’s Special Delivery Cheese is from Spring Brook Farm in Reading, Vermont. Ashbrook is Spring Brook Farm’s latest creation, a Morbier-like cheese with great texture and amazing flavor. It is supple and creamy; the flavor is fruity, nutty, and tangy. It melts amazingly well! Only three wheels are available, so don’t miss it!
Spring Brook Farm is a traditional dairy farm with Jersey cows as well as other farm animals, vegetable gardens, fruit orchards, and honeybees. Since 1994, the farm income has sustained the farm’s educational program, Farms For City Kids, in which groups of urban children aged 8 through 12 come to the farm for a week at a time to experience a farm-based curriculum that combines classroom studies with firsthand farm experience. They help take care of animals, work in the greenhouse and gardens, and watch cheese production, which provides a framework for the students to study economics, chemistry, microbiology, food preservation, health, and nutrition. Students work in groups‚ develop teamwork skills, and strengthen core values such as hard work‚ leadership‚ respect‚ self-confidence, and responsibility. The farm raises funds so that children can participate in the program at no cost.
Cheese-making began at Spring Brook Farm in 2008; sales of the farm’s award-winning cheeses also support the Farms for City Kids Foundation. In 2015, more than 675 students stayed at the farm, in addition to the children from local schools who visited. The cows produced more than 702,000 pounds of milk, 64 calves were born, and the cheeses won ten new awards. Ashbrook, this month’s Special Delivery, won first place in its category in the U.S. Cheese championship and a Bronze Award in the Big E Cheese Competition, and was a Good Food Awards finalist.