Food Lovers' Guide: Farmstead Raw Milk & Cheeses
Whey to Go!
Boggy Meadow Farm - 400 acres of cornfields and pasture on the banks of the Connecticut River - has been farmed since 1822, when it was purchased by Jonathan Mason, a retired U.S. Senator from Massachusetts. The farm has a milking herd of about 200 cows and is still operated by Mason's descendants, though the land is protected and is a conservation easement overseen by the Monadnock Conservancy and the Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forests. For the past several years the farm has also been the home of a small cheese-making operation.
The cheeses are made by hand twice a week in a barn converted into a cheese room. A breezeway connected to a 1770 farmhouse has been re-purposed as a store.
Cheese maker Stan Richmond and his staff make all-natural cheese using vegetarian rennet and raw milk from the farm in a 10,000-pound vat. The cheeses are based on old Alpine recipes and include baby Swiss, maple smoked Swiss, Jack Block ( a mild, creamy cheese) and fiddlehead Tomme (a natural rind, semi-hard cheese aged for more than six months and similar to Tomme de Savoie, from the Haute-Savoie region on the Swiss border).
Though the farm does have an aging cave, most of the cheese is aged in two temperature-controlled semi-trailers. The cheeses were originally marketed as "Fanny Mason Farmstead" but are now labeled "Boggy Meadow Farm."
Boggy Meadow Farm
13 Boggy Meadow Ln., Walpole
Fun Fact: The hens at Pete and Gerry's in Monroe produce organic, omega-3 eggs in a cage-free environment. Rather than being a factory farm, Pete and Gerry's have contracted with 26 small family farms to supply the eggs. The contented White Mountain cluckers are allowed outdoors when the weather is conducive, but they are allowed a little privacy too. They lay their eggs in nests resembling small houses with red curtains for privacy.
Cheese and Milk Resources
Butters Fine Foodand Wine
International Selection of hand-made cheeses from vintage gouda from Holland to goat's milk Bijou from Vermont.
Sandwiches and lunch.
70 North Main St.
Delivery service offers fresh milk from the Sherman Dairy, eggs and other products from local farms from Alton to Nashua and Dover to Contoocook and also operates the Chichester Country Store.
257 Main St., Chichester
Also, visit the NH Dairy Promotion for more great local dairy producers and information.