Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Finding a Cheese Making Class Near You

Happy participants at Curds on the Way in Portland, Oregon
One may be closer than you think!
You know you want to make your own cheese, but you need a little boost into the "great unknown."  What better way to start than by attending a cheese making workshop or class?  It seems like they're everywhere these days! 

Merryl Winstein in St. Louis, Missouri
How do you choose?

When you have a choice of classes, these are a few factors which might help you decide which one you want:

1.  Type of milk.  What kind of milk do they use?  (For example, if you will be using your own sheep's milk or goat's milk to make cheese, you might want to go to a class they will be working with that kind of milk.)

Or, if you live in a city and you will be using pasteurized, homogenized milk from the store, you might want to go to a workshop where that will be used or at least discussed. You can ask about that before you enroll.

Jim Wallace in Shelburne Falls, Massachusetts
2.  Location.  Is the class located at a farm?  If you have animals and you want to ask questions about their care and feeding, this might be important to you.

3.  Number of participants.  How many participants will there be?  You may enjoy being in a larger group or a smaller group, so this might be a factor for you.

4.  Length of class.  The length of the class is important.  If it's a one or two day class, you have to ask yourself if you are up to it.  For older participants, this can be a long time.  Many classes are half-day.  On the other hand, if you are flying a great distance, you might want to attend a two day intensive class to make it worth your while.

Preparation for Curds on the Whey class
taught in Bridgeport, WA
5.  Level.  It probably goes without saying that the level of the class is important.  If you are a beginner, do not think you can jump into an advanced class.  You will not be happy you did.  There will be lots of time later to take more advanced classes when you are ready.

6.  Supplementary materials.  Will you walk away with any supplementary materials?

7.  Access to products.  Will you be able to buy products (like cultures and rennet, molds, wax, etc.) at the workshop?

8.  Price.  If the price seems high, the class may be more advanced than you need.  If you pay more than you want to, you will be miserable and less likely to continue making cheese after the workshop.  So, stay at your financial comfort level.


Location! Location! Location!
Classes Listed Online May 25, 2011
I did a brief survey on Google to see how many websites currently have classes listed, then I sorted them by geographical area.  (Note:  This is just a list of websites I could find online where classes are listed right now (May 25, 2011).  It is just a snapshot of current classes, so I will not be updating it or adding to it, however, if you would like to add your website, you are welcome to do it in the comments.)

This list is for home cheesemakers only.  Many colleges and universities have dairy courses, but they are almost all geared for professionals.  One exception is the Vermont Institute for Artisan Cheese at the University of Vermont.  This year they are planning to offer some beginner courses for the general public.  For more info: 802-656-8300 or jfarnham@uvm.edu.

I know this list is just a drop in the bucket.  There are many places where classes are given regularly, but right now they may not have any listed.  I just want you to be able, today, to go to the last URL given if you see a class near you.  I divided the country by the regions designated on the map below:

New England

MAINE

Hartstone Inn
Camden, Maine
Beginner course taught by Appleton Creamery at their farm (25 minute drive from Inn).  Goats.
800-788-4823
http://www.hartstoneinn.com/creamery_cheese.htm
Ricki Carroll at New England
Cheesemaking Supply Co.

MASSACHUSETTS

Formaggio Kitchen
Cambridge, Massachusetts
Feta & Mozzarella class in June
617-354-4750
https://www.formaggiokitchen.com/classes

New England Cheesemaking Supply Co.
Ashfield, Massachusetts
One day beginner workshops & 2 day advanced workshops
413-397-2012
http://www.cheesemaking.com/JimW.html (advanced)
http://www.cheesemaking.com/cheesemaking101withRickiCarroll.html (beginner)

NEW HAMPSHIRE

Dancing Dog Farm
Peterborough, New Hampshire
603-289-2426
3 hour soft cheese workshops.
http://dancingdogfarm.wordpress.com/farming-classes/

Westminster Artisan Cheese in Vermont
VERMONT

Three Shepherd's Cheese
Warren, Vermont
Three day and one day courses at farm.  Sheep, goat & cow milk.
802-496-3998
http://www.threeshepherdscheese.com/CheeseClasses.aspx

Westminster Artisan Cheese, Peter Dixon
Westminster West, Vermont
2 and 3 day workshops
802-387-4041
http://www.dairyfoodsconsulting.com/training.shtml

Mid-Atlantic

Murray's in NY, NY
NEW YORK

The Artisanal Premium Cheese Center
New York, New York
Hands on Mozzarella classes
877-797-1200
http://www.artisanalcheese.com/prodinfo.asp?number=17HOM

Murray's
New York, New York
Cheesemaking 101 and Mozzarella Making
888-692-4339
http://www.murrayscheese.com/edu_main.asp

PENNSYLVANIA

Sur La Table
King of Prussia, Pennsylvania
2 hour class in August
800-243-0852
http://www.surlatable.com/sku/814632/Homemade-Cheese-and-Dairy-Workshop

NEW JERSEY

Bobolink Dairy
Milford, New Jersey
Half day classes at the creamery, limited to 4 participants.
nina@cowsoutside.com
http://shop.cowsoutside.com/cheesemakingclasses.aspx

Valley Shepherd Creamery
Long Valley, New Jersey
Classes on Sundays at farm.  Sold out until September, 2011.  Sheep.
908-876-3200 x 22
http://www.valleyshepherd.com/cheesemaking.htm
South Atlantic

VIRGINIA

CornerStone Farm
Red Oak, Virginia
Classes March-Early Fall and Farm-Stay
866-977-FARM (3276)
http://www.cornerstonefarm.net/features.html#goatmilk

Sur La Table
Richmond, Virginia
2 hour class in June
800-243-0852
http://www.surlatable.com/sku/796045/Homemade-Cheese-and-Dairy-Workshop

WEST VIRGINIA
Suzanne McMinn's Stringtown Rising Farm

Stringtown Rising Farm-Suzanne McMinn
Gandeeville, West Virginia
Retreat in September with classes
CITRevents@yahoo.com
http://chickensintheroad.com/citr-events/citr-retreat-2011/

East North Central

MICHIGAN

Pioneer School of Homesteading at Quaker Farm
Harrisville, Michigan
Half-day classes, none July-September.  Goats.
989-736-7627
http://quakerfarm.com/cheesemaking.html

Cheesesmithy in Charlotte, Michigan
Cheesesmithy-Gary Colles
Charlotte, Michigan
2 evening classes in June
gcolles@gmail.com
http://sites.google.com/site/cheesesmithy/

WISCONSIN

Moonwise Herbs
Sheboygan, Wisconsin
Two classes in July sponsored by The Driftless Folk School
920-452-HERB (4372)
http://www.moonwiseherbs.com/sheboygancalender.htm 

The Cheesemaker
Plain, Wisconsin
5 weekend workshops this year
414-745-5483
http://thecheesemaker.com/workshops.htm

Token Creek Eco-Inn
Madison, Wisconsin
5 hour class in October
608-513-0016
http://www.tokencreekecoinn.com/workshops

East South Central

TENNESSEE

Standing Stone Nubians
Gallatin, Tennessee
Full days starting in October.  Goats.
615-461-8765
http://www.standingstonenubians.com/Cheese_making_Seminars.html

Fieldstone Organic Farm
West North Central

KANSAS

Fieldstone Organic Farm
Gardner, Kansas
One day, Saturday classes offered April-June.  Goats.
pamela@fieldstoneorganicfarm.com
http://fieldstoneorganicfarm.com/educational/cheese_making_workshop.htm

MISSOURI

Merryl Winstein
St. Louis, Missouri
Wide variety of classes in St. Louis and other locations in Midwest.  Goats.
314-968-2596
http://www.cheesemakingclass.com/

West South Central

TEXAS

Eagle Mountain Farmhouse Cheese
Granbury, Texas
Two 3-day courses in November
802-496-3998
http://www.threeshepherdscheese.com/Texasclass2011.aspx

Mozzarella Company
Dallas, Texas
2 hour classes
214-741-4072
http://www3.dmagazine.com/events/details/Cheesemaking

Sur La Table
Houston, Texas
2 hour class in July
800-243-0852
http://www.surlatable.com/sku/822452/Homemade-Cheese-and-Dairy-Workshop

Rebeccah Durkin's class at The Ploughshare Institute
The Ploughshare Institute for Sustainable Culture
Waco, Texas
One day classes in both hard and soft cheesemaking
877-392-6920
http://www.sustainlife.org/kitchen.php

Mountain

ARIZONA

Sur la Table
Scottsdale, Arizona
One 2 hour class in June.
800-243-0852
http://www.surlatable.com/sku/793406/Homemade-Cheese-and-Dairy-Workshop 

COLORADO

Briar Gate Farm
Hygiene, Colorado
Short beginner classes, will come to your home and teach.  Goats.
kate@briargatefarm.com
http://www.briargatefarm.com/programsforadults/cheesemakingclasses.html

Rich McGaughey
Denver, Colorado
Many classes at different locations
macscheese@msn.com
http://denver.craigslist.org/cls/2390439944.html

The Goat Cheese Lady
Colorado Springs, Colorado
Half-day classes.  Goats.
719-651-9819
http://thegoatcheeselady.wordpress.com/schedule-of-classes/

IDAHO

Nampa Brewers Center
Nampa, Idaho
Classes limited to 4, so they fill up fast.
208-468-7724
http://www.nampabrewers.com/Cheesemaking.html

UTAH

Nature Hill Farms
Cedar City, Utah
heathercarter@yahoo.com
Three hour classes at the farm and 2 day workshops at nearby inns.
http://www.facebook.com/pages/Nature-Hills-Farms-Heather-Carter/128234170576535

Mama Rae's Cheesemaking Supply
Payson, Utah
Second Wednesday and last Saturday of every month, and every other Thursday.
801-830-3904
http://sites.google.com/site/mamaraescheesemakingsupply/classes

Davis Food Co-op, Davis, CA
Pacific

CALIFORNIA

Chez Cherie
La Canada, California
Evening classes in Mozzarella & Ricotta
818-952-7217
http://www.chezcherie.com/

Curds and Wine
San Diego, California
2 1/2 hour classes
858-384-6566
http://www.curdsandwine.com/

Davis Food Co-op
Davis, California
Afternoon & evening classes at their teaching kitchen.
530-758-2667
http://www.daviscoop.com/classes.html

Elements of Taste
Sonoma, California
Half-day classes at Ramekins Cooking School and various other locations. 
info@elementsoftaste.com
http://www.elementsoftaste.com/home-crafted-cheesemaking.html#classes  

Heather Westenhofer
Orange County, California
Also teaches at The Orange County School of Domestic Arts info@ocschoolofdomesticarts.com
http://www.occheesemaker.com/calendar.html

Love Apple Farm
Santa Cruz, California
Half day classes at farm. Goats.
831-588-3801
http://www.growbetterveggies.com/growbetterveggies/upcoming-eventsclasses.html

Sur la Table
Carlsbad, California
800-243-0852
2 two hour classes in August
http://www.surlatable.com/sku/813964/Homemade-Cheese-and-Dairy-Workshop
http://www.surlatable.com/sku/825760/Homemade-Cheese-and-Dairy-Workshop

Sur la Table
Los Angeles, California
800-243-0852
Two hour class in May
http://www.surlatable.com/sku/786905/Homemade-Cheese-and-Dairy-Workshop
Two hour class in June
http://www.surlatable.com/sku/794677/Homemade-Cheese-and-Dairy-Workshop

Sur La Table headquarters in Seattle, WA
Sur la Table
Los Gatos, California
800-243-0852 
1 two hour class in September
http://www.surlatable.com/sku/821645/Homemade-Cheese-and-Dairy-Workshop

Sur la Table
Newport Beach, California
800-243-0852
Two hour class in June
http://www.surlatable.com/sku/791830/Homemade-Cheese-and-Dairy-Workshop
Two hour class in July

http://www.surlatable.com/sku/798512/Homemade-Cheese-and-Dairy-Workshop

The Cheese School of San Francisco
San Francisco, California
Extensive list of classes.
415- 346-7530
http://www.cheeseschoolsf.com/

OREGON

Curds on the Way
Portland, Oregon
Classes are held in a variety of locations in the area.
gaylestarbuck@bctonline.com 
http://www.curdsontheway.com/class_schedule

Kookoolan Farms
Washed curd class at Kookoolan Farms
Yamhill, Oregon
Mostly half-day classes at the farm.
503-730-7535
http://www.kookoolanfarms.com/Classes_and_Events.php

WASHINGTON

Bader Beer and Wine Supply
Vancouver, Washingtom
Half-day classes.
800-586-3610
http://www.baderbrewing.com/store/home.php?cat=450

Mark Solomon
Seattle, Washington
3 hour evening classes
425-744-1131
http://seattlecheesemaking.com

Monteillet Fromagerie
Dayton, Washington
One day courses and 2 day intensives.  Goats and sheep.
509-382-1917 or 509-876-1429
http://www.monteilletcheese.com/workshops/

North Seattle Community College
Seattle, Washington
Half day and evening.
206-527-3705
http://www.campusce.net/nscc/course/course.aspx?C=70&pc=16&mc=17&sc=

Olympia Food Co-op
Olympia, Washington
3 hour class in July
360-956-3870
http://www.olympiafood.coop/classes/

River Valley Ranch
Fall City, Washington
3 hour workshops, one Saturday every month.
425-222-5277
http://www.rivervalleycheese.com/learntomakecheesecom/id22.html

The Cellar Homebrew
Seattle, Washington
3 hour evening classes.
800-342-1871
http://www.cellar-homebrew.com/store/catalog/Cheese-Making-Class-p-1196.html

You still can't find a class?  They're not all listed online.

These are just a few of the many places to look:
Cheese specialty shops
Upscale grocery stores & Whole Foods
Co-ops
Free universities
Colleges with non-credit classes
Learning centers
Creameries
Dairy farms
Culinary schools

You have other options ...
Ricki made our DVD Cheesemaking 101"> and it's just like being in her workshop, except you can watch it again and again!  There are several other videos on the market, as well.

You may also find hundreds of YouTube videos about making cheese.

So, get going!  What are you waiting for?

13 comments:

Andrew said...

http://www.nampabrewers.com/Cheesemaking.html

Here is a place in Nampa, ID that offers small cheese making classes.

Jeri said...

Thanks, Andrew. I went ahead and added it to the list because I didn't have any others in Idaho. Happy Cheesemaking!

Robert said...

I know you're not planning on updating or keeping this list current, but cheese classes are offered in California at: www.robertshomebrew.com

Jeri said...

Yes, check Robert's Home Brew out (in Sacramento). He is not on the list because he doesn't actually schedule his classes unless someone calls him up and asks. Then, he limits the class to 3-4 folks.

I recommend him to you because a small class like this can be a great learning opportunity. Plus, you can schedule it at your own convenience.

G@CurdsandWine said...

In the San Diego area, Curds and Wine (curdsandwine.com) offers cheesemaking classes and a complete line of cheesmaking supplies. Also, Great News cooking school (www.great-news.com) offers classes.

Gina Marcell said...

MOUNTAIN GOAT LODGE B&B in Salida Colorado (South Central Colorado)teaches goat husbandry, and cheese making classes using our fresh goat's milk.
More info at our website: www.MountainGoatLodge.com
or call 719-539-7173

Gina Marcell said...

Mountain Goat Lodge (www.MountainGoatLodge.com) Bed and Breakfast located in Salida, CO (South Central Colorado) offers classes on goat husbandry and cheese making for guests and non-guests alike. Check our website and also call for class reservations. Generally classes are 4 hrs each Sunday. 719 539 7173.

Jeri said...

In a further e-mail, Gina added that classes are for guests and non-guests and they are usually 4 hours on Sundays.

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Gloria Putnam said...

Hi! I teach a 3-part cheese making series at my urban micro-dairy in Altadena, CA. The series includes 3 day-long classes, one each month, and restarts every quarter. We are currently in the middle of our 5th series. Registration is through the Institute of Domestic Technology www.instituteofdomestictechnology.com. Thanks!

Jeri said...

This could be a free ad in our classified section. Contact ads@cheesemaking.com

Leon said...

You can join us for a cheese making course in South Africa. We present in Stellenbosch mostly - this is very close to Cape Town in the Western Cape Winelands area - so makes for a memorable visit :-)
2 Day course with practicals on gouda, cheddar, feta, pizza mozzarella, halloumi and ricotta.