During midsummer, while you’re headed up north to the cabin or enjoying a cold one at your favorite patio, the folks at Uplands Farm are hard at work. Pleasant Ridge Reserve is in its height of production due to the high yield of milk from the herd at this time of year. The cattle are enjoying a lush diet of pasture grasses and wild flowers whose flavor profiles are reflected in the milk, and in turn, the cheese itself. Cheesemaker, Andy Hatch, maintains a closed herd. This means that they breed using their own bulls and calves rather than sourcing outside cattle. This allows the herd to evolve with the land. Uplands is in the Driftless region of Wisconsin. Our cheese monger, Mallory, wrote a great post on the area that you can check out here.
I can’t write about summer alpines without mentioning L’Etivaz. Henri Gutknecht makes cheese in his 266 year old chalet. The small scale producer creates, on average, two wheels of cheese a day. Gutknecht, along with other cheese makers, respect centuries of tradition by heating the raw Montbeliard and Red Holstein milk in large copper vats over open fires. The wheels we receive each year have the classic bass notes that resonate warm and nutty. Initial floral grassy notes make way for a clean finish.