The first day of spring may be a couple of days away, but the flavor of spring has already arrived in the form of Ascutney Mountain from Cobb Hill Cheese.
Produced in the aptly named Hartland, Vermont, this raw cow’s milk cheese is so fresh and earthy, images of green pastures pop into your head thanks to its grassy notes. Made in the alpine style, Ascutney Mountain has a clean, hard rind and a smooth semi-firm interior with a stunning dandelion-yellow color. As it ages, the sweetness turns to nutty goodness and it’s like eating a completely different cheese.
Interestingly, Cobb Hill is a co-housing community. Unlike a co-op where farmers share land or workspace but live independently, the folks at Cobb Hill live together on the 270 acres of land. Producing everything from eggs to maple syrup, the residents live in a surreal self-sustaining utopia:
“We try to practice sustainable land management – ecological farming and forestry, energy efficiency, and minimization of waste. We are also developing the skills of community: sharing, responsibility, compassion, communication, consensus building, conflict resolution, appreciation of diversity and love. We believe that these skills are necessary to bring the larger society to sustainability and sufficiency, and we want to learn them to the best of our ability.”