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On a recent trip to the Berkshires, we took a ride to Williamstown with no real destination in mind. Then cheese popped in my head as I remembered this is where Cricket Creek Farm is located. They just ran a Kickstarter campaign to renovate their old “Stone Barn” so it can be used as a community space, and invest in solar power. It was a success!
We discovered their wonderful cheeses at an indoor farmer’s market in Troy, New York last Thanksgiving. So excited, I subscribed to receive their emails and “liked” them on Facebook. The cows even tweet! They sent out some great messages this winter with adorable pictures of some of the new calves and warm, wonderful stories about people too.
As we wandered the farm, we met Nathaniel, who took us with him while he fed the pigs some whey. We met Ophelia and her offspring as they almost inhaled the delicious whey. He told us all about the farm and his many interests. He told us that his girlfriend also worked here and she was a cheese maker. Of course, I had to tell him about my mozzarella teaching and we went back and forth sharing six degree of separation stories. His girlfriend’s sister actually lives in our town!
As we wrapped up our outdoor tour of the farm and animals we headed inside to the store. It’s self-service style and you can get raw milk as well as their many awesome cheeses. But they also have products from across the region from Fire Cider, maple syrup, breads, jams, homemade dog biscuits, pottery and grass fed beef. Truly something for everyone!
Now here comes the highlight of the visit–they were making cheese! As Nathaniel saw me walk by the cheese room and he called me in to meet his girlfriend and the other cheese maker. I changed from my shoes into a pair of rubber boots, pulled my hood over my head and down the steps I went.
They had were up to their elbows in a big vat of curds. It was on it’s “whey” to becoming feta. Soon they would transfer the curds to individual molds so they can expel moisture (the whey). After a few turns, sitting overnight, they would begin the brine process.
Kickstarter believes that creative projects make for a better world, and they’re thrilled to help support new ones. Building a community of backers around an idea is an amazing way to make something new. Just think of the new community Cricket Creek Farm will create!