The Bloomy Rind & The Turnip Truck Share Their Favorite Music City Goods & Makers
In the span of a few short and busy years, Kathleen Cotter has become Nashville’s premiere fromager. As owner of the cut-to-order artisan cheese shop The Bloomy Rind, Cotter is doing wonders for the city’s cheese literacy and playing an important role in its much-talked-about food renaissance. And as founder of the Southern Artisan Cheese Festival– the annual fest is now in its fourth year- she’s creating a culture around and raising awareness about the Southern cheese scene. She kindly offered to share a few words about some of her local faves- and recommend some tasty accompaniments, too.
Also contributing this time out is Kathryn Johnson, who spends her days coordinating marketing efforts for Nashville’s natural food markets The Turnip Truck and her free time blogging about food and music.
We’re excited to check out their small batch recommendations, particularly goods by Noble Springs Dairy and Sequatchie Cove Creamery since they made both of their short lists!
Owner, The Bloomy Rind & Founder, Southern Artisan Cheese Festival
Just a few years into cheesemaking, and Nathan and Padgett Arnold are winning national awards for some of their Alpine-inspired farmstead cheeses. Look for their Reblochon inspired cheese, Dancing Fern, or the tomme style Cumberland, which is a fabulous every day cheese.
A great, local source for fresh chèvre and a charming little soft-ripened crottin called Harpeth Fleur.
Dairy sheep are challenging to raise in the South, so although the following producers work outside of Nashville’s borders, we’re super lucky to have this new crop of sheep cheese makers in the region:
- Many Fold Farm. A Georgia farm making fresh and soft-ripened gems.
- Good Shepherd Cheese: Crafting aged Pyranees-style wheels in Kentucky.
- Day Spring Dairy: A brand-spanking-new name out of Alabama developing a haloumi and other less common styles.
And because great cheese deserves great accompaniments:
Hand made, small batch preserves crafted by two Prohibition Era-loving Nashvillian sisters. They dream up incredible flavor combinations based on classic cocktails using local fruits and organic ingredients.
This Asheville dairy whips up little jars of heaven called Carmelita, a goat milk caramel that pairs well with cheese or your favorite ice cream.
Round out the cheese plate with a Bella Nashville baguette – they make these on weekend mornings from the residual heat in their wood-fired pizza oven.
Marketing Coordinator, The Turnip Truck
Located in Williamson County, TN, Trubee is doing their part to promote healthy hives! Instead of confining their bees to a single-source diet, their bees are “free-range.” Not only is their honey delicious with slight seasonal variations in flavor, they have great packaging and other products such as their Beeswax Rub which smells divine and can be used on your skin or to condition your cowboy boots!
Allan Benton apparently had never heard of Italian prosciutto when he began smoking his country hams but that is essentially what it is, only those of us in Tennessee like to think it’s better! I’ve impressed many big city visitors with our little Appalachian prosciutto.
Gayle and Jim Tanner make excellent fresh chevre and aged goat’s milk cheese on their farm in Waynesboro, TN. They are perfectionists and they have the awards to prove it. One thing that makes their farm stand out is their special cheese aging cave they built on their farm. They are always happy to show you – they give tours and even have cabins you can rent on their farm.
Nashville is really proud of our first bean-to-bar chocolate maker. The Salt & Pepper Bar is a delightful blend of salty and sweet. It’s the perfect little Nashville gift I always take to any out-of-town friends. In fact, they sort of expect it now. Not only is it super delicious, the packaging is a little piece of art designed by Isle of Printing.
Located in Sequatchie County, TN, close to Chattanooga, this creamery has several signature cheeses which they make from the milk of their own grass-fed cows. They have a simple rustic tomme called Cumberland, a washed rind variety called Coppinger, and (my favorite and ASC winner) the Dancing Fern which is a velvety soft cheese similar to the French Reblochon. They can be found in regional specialty shops and farmer’s markets around the area. And of special note – their farm is about to go solar!
Justyne and Dustin Noble met as teens at a national goat competition and exchanged emails. Now, they have a 230-acre farm with nearly a hundred goats, chickens, horses, and dogs. They make fresh chevre and occasionally produces some aged goat’s milk cheeses as well. They also have a delicious, clean and smooth tasting goat milk that has been low-temperature pasteurized. Most recently, they have been making a goat’s milk kefir.
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