Sunday, April 8, 2007

Travels to the Hill Country and Back

Last week we finally had a good reason to go west: the Hill Country Food and Wine Festival. It was perfect timing as the wildflowers were in bloom. (We refrained, however, from taking photos of ourselves basking amidst the bluebonnets.)

The festival was in Georgetown, outside of Austin. There we saw two of our favorite Texas originals, Paula Lambert (far left) of the Mozzarella Company and her master manager, Mitchell (center).

(Don't assume from this photo that we were working hard, most of our time was spent in wine tasting.)

On our way back we stopped at Pure Luck, where we didn't find Amelia, but peeked in on her assistant Juana, busy making cheese, and some of their new arrivals.
(Can you believe all of the Pure Luck comes out of this tiny room?)

Our final stop was to visit a new cheesemaker, 18-year-old Chrissy Omo of CKC Farms in Blanco (pronounced Blank-oh, not Blahn-co, as Kendra kept reminding me). Cheesemaking at CKC is a family affair with younger brothers Kenny and Connor (the K and C of "CKC") chipping in and Mom and Dad giving their full support. The inspiration, however, comes from Chrissy, who after visiting cheesemakers in Italy, came back impassioned and determined to start making cheese. Now in her second year of goat-raising and cheesemaking, Chrissy seems as happy and confident as ever, and her efforts are impressive. We loved her Baby Caprino, a small soft-ripened round, and her Baby Blue, a soft blue with a molded rind reminiscent of Montbriac.

After getting up to milk the goats she travels to Texas State where she's studying international business. And I could rarely make a 9 a.m. class . . .


Ian said...

How many of the 14 Texas cheesemakers are making goats' cheeses? It seems like a lot...not that I know what a normal ratio would be.

Lindsey said...

You're right - goats are definitely in the lead here in Texas. Not sure why. We need someone to start raising sheep . . . are you interested?

Ian said...

I don't know, I am Scottish. People might talk.

Rachmat Syarif said...

Really nice farm!
Canadian Animal Lovers

Cows in Repose on Veldhuizen Family Farm. Dublin, TX