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Southern Cheesemakers

sweetgrassdairy.jpgCheck out this blog post from Gourmet magazine about Southern cheesemakers. John T. Edge notes that typically, when Southerns have talked about cheese, "we have been more likely to talk pimento cheese ... But that was then. This is now."

He praises the cheese from two Southern operations: Sweetgrass Dairy, in Georgia (goat cheese pictured, left), and John Folse's Bittersweet Plantation, in Gonzales, Louisiana.

Closer to home, I found two notable cheesemakers in Alabama: Sweet Home Farm, in Baldwin County, has been singled out on Emeril's blog, on Cheesebyhand.com, and in the Stockman Grass Farmer magazine.

A Southern cheesemaker success story is Fromagerie Belle Chevre in Elkmont, Ala. The business and their award-winning goat cheeses have been written up in publications ranging from Food & Wine and Gourmet through Vogue and Business Week. Their cheeses can be found at upscale stores such as Whole Foods and Dean & Deluca, or through their web site.

It's much easier to find good cheese in Birmingham than it used to be. A number of restaurants now offer cheese plates, and V. Richard's, Tria Market and Whole Foods all have wonderful cheese counters. The selection at Whole Foods is larger, but if you go to V. Richard's or Tria you can sample the cheese you're interested in before you buy.  

Posted on Tuesday, October 2, 2007 at 01:07PM by Registered CommenterDeborah Lockridge in , , , | Comments2 Comments

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Reader Comments (2)

You can sample cheeses at Whole Foods too! In fact they gave me samples of blue cheeses with a cracker and a honeyed walnut. I was in heaven.

October 2, 2007 | Unregistered Commenterfinestra

At least two of the Sweetgrass cheeses are sold at Tria, including a very fine Tomme style. They are world-class cheeses.

Another Alabama cheese worth mentioning is the line of goat cheeses from Bulger Creek, which has had a stand at the Pepper Place farmer's market for years. They mostly do a soft goat cheese, some with vegetables, some rolled in pecan. They just started making a goat "cheddar" which really should be treated as a grating cheese. Good stuff.

October 10, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterBig Daddy

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