The fourth stop on the Bi-Rite Cheese Trek takes us to a newer farm in Chattahoochee Hills Country – a swath of undeveloped Georgia countryside that’s a short drive from Atlanta. This area is the last rural area near Atlanta to prevent suburban sprawl with the hopes of preserving the natural beauty and agricultural traditions of the region.
Ross and Rebecca Williams started Many Fold Farm in 2009 with an ambitious mission to craft meat and cheese products on a piece of land that adhered to natural systems, while also educating the public about sustainable farming in the South. 200 sheep and 800 chickens live on Many Fold Farm – ewes are milked to produce cheese, lambs are slaughtered for meat, and the hen’s eggs are sold at the nearby farmers’ markets.
I first tried Many Folds Farm cheeses while at a conference three summers ago and they definitely stood out from other cheeses I tried that week. There aren’t many cheeses made in the South, let alone French-inspired small format sheep’s milk cheeses. Ross and Rebecca also stood out as a couple – they were young, energetic, and engaging.
It has taken a couple of years for Many Folds to increase their production and meet demand for their unique cheeses; they are just now beginning to appear on the West Coast. Condor’s Ruin is my favorite from Many Fold – a delicate sheep’s milk cheese inspired by the French classic Valençay. The ash coated pyramid develops a beautiful white rind along with well-balanced lactic flavors with notes of grass & garlic. This impressive effort speaks to the quality of the sheep’s milk and the care given during the cheese making process. The velvety and dense paste of Condor’s Ruin is best enjoyed with a dry white wine or a complex sparkling wine.
The next stop on our Cheese Trek takes us to an island off the coast Friesland for one of Holland’s rarest farmhouse cheeses that will be available in the Markets on July 7th. Ask our mongers how you can join the Cheese Trek and #cheeseyourownadventure!