I remember listening to NPR probably 15 years ago, and hearing an expert on cheese proclaim the greatness of Capriole. At the time, I knew the Schads made goat cheese, but realizing that their product was nationally renowned was a kick. It made me proud for our area.
Last year was NABC's 25th, and this year it's Capriole's turn. Following is their e-newsletter, which recounts the turning of a page formerly filled with goats as the next Capriole chapter begins.
Reinventing, transitioning, evolving ... these are the notions that keep small business owners awake at night. I suspect that the unexpected closure of Lynn's Paradise Cafe represents one way of her moving to a different phase. Capriole's solution to the logistical task of maintaining a herd of living creatures, milking them and making beautiful cheese is another. Satchel Paige was right when he warned against looking back, lest we see someone gaining on us.
CAPRIOLE'S SILVER ANNIVERSARY
Wishing you a Happy & Cheesey 2013 ... (2013 is also) Capriole's Silver Anniversary, and 25 years of cheese making on our southern Indiana farm. It's been quite a family journey . . . and still is!
A little 4-H project that began in on our farm in 1977 with 2 goats grew over those years to a herd of 500. We've made wonderful milk and developed signature cheeses over those years, and 2012 was a year of even greater change. While the animals have always been a big part of our identity, we realized we still didn't have enough milk and that the farm couldn't sustain more animals. After months of angst, we were approached by a young, Indiana dairy family. They had years of goat experience and their own herd, but needed to grow and establish a more reliable market for their milk. In December, they moved the majority of our herd to their farm. While it's been a big change, it's also an exciting opportunity to grow and still work closely with our milk source, encourage goat milk producers in our area, and help preserve family farms . We're jazzed for a new adventure!
We've also been inspired over the years by the efforts of the cowgirls, Peggy Smith and Sue Connelly, to preserve the heritage of family farms through Farmland Trust oganizations. In 2012 we granted a conservation easement to the Sycamore Land Trust. The trust insures that our land will remain farmland, and its upland forests, open fields and caves, and natural springs will be preserved in perpetuity and provide habitat for a wide range of animals, as well as native and endangered plants.
In 2012 Sycamore Land Trust honored Capriole with their "Conservation Business of the Year" award.
We live where we work, and that's made a definite difference in both our business and our life style. My father and mother (Larry and Judy, who started Capriole) and now my son (Sam) and I, have homes here. The great -- and the not-so-great -- thing is that when the cheese needs us at 1 am, we're here. Our goal has always been to produce sustainable, artisan cheeses that can sit comfortably on shelves and cheese boards next to the best of Europe. Our life style has been part of making that happen. Over the years we've been honored with numerous national and international awards, including a Best-of-Show from the American Cheese Society and the designation "prudhomme' in La Guilde du Fromagers.
The success of our cheeses has always, and will continue to, reflect the people who live and work here as a family, in close connection to the land, and in a place we call home.
Kate Schad and Judy Schad
We'll be celebrating 2013 with some very special, "reserve", aged cheeses
Capriole's aged, cheeses represent a very unique family of signature cheeses made with goat milk--a niche that's difficult to fill in the cheese case. Semi-hard to semi-soft, they run a flavor range from mushroomy and herbal to beefy--and always earthy, but clean.
Old Kentucky Tomme ... 4-5 lb. wheel with penicillium rind
Mont St. Francis 1 lb. washed rind
Julianna 1 lb. penicillium rind with herbes de Provence and pepper
10329 New Cut Rd.
Greenville, IN 47124