Spring Hill Jersey Cheese
As a fan of the rich buttery cheddars from Spring Hill Jersey Cheese (4235 Spring Hill Road, Petaluma, 707-762-3446, firstname.lastname@example.org), I was delighted to find two new products featured at Fiesta Market in Sebastopol last week fresh cheese curd and Breeze. When I first met these folks at a cheese tasting 3 years ago, Id asked to buy fresh curd and was turned down. Im pretty excited to have a new local source of high quality curd and not have to depend on the next Midwest express.
The fresh curd comes in plain and chive. Fiesta knows curd these were packed the day before (freshness is essential) and kept away from the refrigerator case as chilling takes away the squeak. A big part of the attraction of fresh cheese curd is its rubbery texture and how it squeaks against the teeth when you bite into it. Spring Hills version also offers up a butter-laden flavor of fresh Jersey milk with just the right amount of salt. My friend started to cry when he tasted these, saying it reminded him of drinking the whole milk from his grandfathers all Jersey herd in Iowa. This beats anything from Wisconsin or Minnesota.
Breeze is soft-ripened with a runny golden core and downy rind. The shelf-talkers description likening it to a cross between brie and teleme is spot on. It combines the texture and fruity qualities of teleme jack and the richness and slight earthiness of brie but milder. Very nice.
re: Cynthia Tuthill
You're welcome. Yesterday I got a bit peeved on the General Topics board when another chowhound maligned cheese curd. (g)
I was in the original Oakville Grocery on Monday and noticed that they had Spring Hill Breeze. It was $12/lb., whereas I paid $8/lb. at Fiesta Market in Sebastopol. Didn't see any cheese curd though.
re: Melanie Wong
I've found cheese curd at the Ferry Plaza farmers' market on Saturdays (corner stall near the almond guy -- forget the name, though). Having lived in Wisconsin, I got very excited, was told that it was fresh when I asked, bought some, and it was old -- didn't squeak. I complained and had them exchange it for newer curds, but even those didn't squeak. So I'm still on the hunt for squeaky cheese curds; the ones from Ferry Plaza would be better breaded & fried as they're not really fresh.
Melanie, the descriptions of the Spring Hill Cheeses were so enticing (and I would love to have some of that fresh-curd for breakfast NOW), that I immediately plugged in their website only to find it is currently under construction. Boo hoo. I'll have to try the telephone tomorrow and keep my fingers crossed that they ship.