Chris Chmiel and his wife Michelle Gorman are self-starters. They are the living, breathing examples of sustainability and have created value from practically nothing. By using hard work, tenaciousness and old-world craftsmanship, they’ve turned the milk from their goats into some of the best cheeses on the planet.
Michelle and Chris have also rescued a long-forgotton Ohio fruit which used to rot on the ground and transformed it into a much sought-after culinary treat. Oh, and in their free time, they were also were sucessful in getting the State of Ohio to name the paw-paw the State fruit!
The cheese aging room holds a treasure-trove of a delicious variety of cheese. My son Jake loves his paw-paw blueberry pop.
Chris and Michelle are the owners of Integration Acres and their cheeses were in one of my first blog entries. Their goat feta was also highlighted in a wine-pairing finalist in the Wine Spectator Video Contest that also featured Jorma Kaukenon who was gracious enought to create a magnificent guitar soundtack. It was during this time that I learned, (the hard way), never to let a goat near my crotch.
Just like in the Parma region of Italy, Chris feeds the whey from cheesemaking to his lucky pigs. Is Prosciutto di Albany on the way?
Today, I visited Integration Acres again and got a first-hand look of true cheese artisans at work. The cheeses produced here range from a Tomme, to Gouda, Cheddar, Blue, Chevre, Feta to Romano. This is all done in small batches, much like the European cheesemakers of old and it blew me away!
Here is the video journal of my visit.
My next entry will include some pizzas using some chevre, Griffins Dream and the Blue cheese featured here. (although, they are beckoning me right now…)