Saturday, October 31, 2015

New Ballas Cheese Feature: Jacobs and Brichford Everton

New Ballas and Forsyth Cheese Feature

Jacobs and Brichford Everton

Everton, their take on an alpine large format cheese, named after a nearby town in Southeast Indiana. Weighing in at twenty-five pounds, Everton is only about a third the size of a traditional Gruyere or Comte. That being said, it makes up for its diminutive size with robust flavor. Everton is a bit sharper than imported gruyeres, with bold overtones of sweet onion and brothy tamari. As with the Ameribella, the quality of the milk shines through. The paste is bright yellow, and flecked with those crunchy tyrosine “flavor crystals” that cheese eaters love. Everton would be a perfect melting cheese for fondue, or any of the myriad of Swiss recipes that highlight melted cheese at its finest. Or, if you are like me, you could just eat it as is.

This Just In! Jacobs and Brichford Farmstead Cheeses

Matthew Brichford at home with his herd of Jersey, Tarantaise and Normandy cows.
Photo Credit:

When I think of Indiana, I think of the Jackson Five, of the Mad-Max-esque landscape of Gary, and of the white-knuckle traffic spilling off of the Chicago expressway. Lately, we’ve been bringing in some gorgeous cheeses from Indiana that has changed everything I thought I knew about the “Crossroads of America.” It started a few years ago with some lovely goat cheeses from Capriole Dairy, and now with some seriously delicious farmstead cheeses from Jacobs and Brichford.

While Jacobs and Brichford is a relative newcomer to the cheese scene, their farm dates back to the war of 1812, when their family was allocated land in the Indiana Territory as a survivors benefit for a relative who had died in combat. Over the next two hundred years, the Brichford family used the land to farm just about everything imaginable. In 1995, the couple started a fluid milk dairy, with the hope of one day making cheese

Over the next few decades, they added heirloom breeds of cattle to the herd (Jersey, Tarantaise and Normandy) all known for excellent milk quality and high butterfat content. Matthew claims that he is “not a cheesemaker, he’s a farmer who makes cheese.” So when it came time to make cheese, Leslie and Matthew went to France to meet with geneticists, and brought cheesemakers to the farm to develop recipes that would highlight the quality of their milk. Today they have only 90 milking cows, and only make their exclusively raw-milk cheeses when the cows are grazing on lush spring,​ summer​, and fall​ pasture​s​. Their ​daughter, Maize, does marketing and sales while their other daughter, Miah, came back home to the farm to help with grazing management.​

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