|Today, you can buy a piece of decent chèvre in any major city. But in the early 1980s, few people knew what chèvre—goat cheese—was. It was then that Allison Hooper learned how to make chèvre, as an apprentice cheesemaker in Brittany, and returned to Vermont with a passion to make it in the U.S. Fortunately, she found a business partner and an audience of chefs—then consumers—eager to serve her products. Vermont Butter & Cheese Company became a leader in the American artisan cheese movement, and Americans learned how to love chèvre. At VBC, as the company is fondly known, the goat cheeses were joined by European-style cow’s milk dairy products also relatively unknown to Americans: crème fraîche, mascarpone and even quark. And then came the great artisan cultured butters, higher in butterfat than American contenders and the zenith of butters, as you’ll read in detail in the full review. All of the cow’s milk products are certified kosher by KOF-K, are carried by fine retailers nationwide and are available online. Join us in exploring these award-winning, artisan dairy queens. Find more of our favorite butters and cheeses in the Butter & Cheese Section of THE NIBBLE online magazine.||Crottin, the classic goat cheese shape from the Loire Valley of France, as made in the U.S.A. by Vermont Butter & Cheese Company.|
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