Today, the Willamette Valley. This was a special day, as we met in in this valley 33 years ago! We visited three cheesemakers and then two wineries in Dundee. Cheesemaking facilities are quite different from each other. At Full Circle Creamery in Scio, OR, Brian gave us a tour of the spacious cheese plant. Brian and Kate both went to Oregon State University, Sherri’s alma mater. The Creamery is in the former Noris Dairy and has lots of other stainless steel equipment-an ice cream maker, a soup pot, a yogurt maker, and glass milk filler, this list goes on. They make about 600 pounds of cheese one day a week with milk from Holsteins. The curds and the aged raw cheddar were delicious!
Closer to Salem, Willamette Valley Cheese has a large tasting room and we happily tasted about 20 cheeses. Milk from the Jerseys, Guernsey and Holsteins are made into about 3000 pounds of cheese a week. The curious cows definitely wanted to check us out. Sherri also got kissed by a cow.
Next stops were Torii Mor and Lange wineries. This is all about due diligence you know.
Neighboring these two wineries is Briar Rose Creamery. Her goat milk comes from the coast, near Tillamook, and thus imparts that specific terroir. Sarah’s cheesemaking room is a work of art and spacious. We sampled several wonderful cheeses, and an amazing chevre truffle. Although she was out of her Madrona, luckily, we tasted and swooned over it at the Cheese Bar the day before.
The passion of these cheesemakers certainly shines through their fine products.