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Toma Primavera from Cherry Grove Farm

May 26, 2011

I came across this cheese from Cherry Grove when visiting the Farmer’s Market in my area this past week.  I am familiar with another cheese from this farm as Lucy’s Whey carries “Herdsman” on a pretty regular basis.  This cheese, however, was new for me.

Cherry Grove Farm primarily milks Jersey cows, but the person at the market told me that they also milk a smattering of Holstein and other breeds to round out their milk quality and quantity.  The cows are all grass-fed during the summer months, and hay during the winter, with 2 months off in order to give the cows (and farmers) a break.  This focus on seasonal milking and rotational grazing practices really speaks to the quality of product that they are striving to produce.  As a consumer and  cheese lover, this means a lot to me.

What struck me about this cheese was the gorgeous color of the rind and paste.  My picture may not quite do it justice, but the orange washed-rind and golden-yellow paste provides quite a contrast, especially when strolling by their market stand out  in the sunshine.

Toma Primavera is quite pungent when it comes up to room temperature.  More so than I would have originally expected. Nothing quite like Grayson or Époisses, but pungent all the same.  The paste is incredibly creamy.  Right from the start, you can tell that this cheese will melt beautifully on just about anything.  In tasting a bite, I get elements of butter, almonds, and just a hint of tang on the end that lingered for quite a while on the long finish.  This is a bold cheese.  Not overly assertive, but distinctive enough to where I would not quite classify this as “mild”.

Definitely worth checking out the next time you happen across their cheese at their Farm Store, a farmer’s market, or cheese shop near you.

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