Mimi Avocado Visits Cabot Creamery in Cabot, Vermont

| 12 Comments

Cabot Creamery Entrance

Last Saturday I drove out to Cabot, Vermont to see the Cabot Creamery.  It has been many years since I’ve been there…33 to be exact.  The last time I went to Cabot was in 1981 when my then-boyfriend had come to Vermont to meet my family.   We bought an old fashioned wheel of special Cabot cheddar cheese to take back to California, and shared it on the day we announced our engagement to his family.

Here we are in 1981, cutting our wheel of Cabot cheddar cheese at the avocado ranch in California. We carried that cheese in our suitcase,  all the way to California from Cabot, Vermont!

wheel of Cabot cheddar

If you are ever in central Vermont,  plan to take the beautiful drive through the greenest fields and forests that you’ll ever see.  Enjoy the old farmsteads with manicured lawns,  magnificent flower gardens, picturesque villages, forests, streams…and the bluish purple mountains that layer themselves in the changing light from early morning to late evening.  Drive up into the hillside village of Cabot, Vermont to find the historic creamery that has grown to become one of the most recognized brands of dairy products in the country.  What began as a small cooperative of 94 independent farm families over 90 years ago  is still owned cooperatively by farm families throughout the Northeast,  preserving the highest standards of quality for dairy products such as butter, yogurt, cottage cheese, and of course, their award-winning cheeses.

Cabot Creamery

Cabot Creamery looks pretty much the same as it did the last time I was there, except for the new Visitor’s Center and the beautiful red and white paint! As you can see, the place wasn’t crowded for a Saturday afternoon in summertime…perfect for learning about cheese-making and for tasting the different cheeses that are made here!

While you wait for the next tour, take a photo of yourself …ever wondered what you might look like as a black and white cow?

Cow Face Collage

Cabot is one of the most social-media friendly companies, so it should come as no surprise to find out that the Cabot Cow has her own hashtag…you can upload your photo and become one of a large herd of Cabot Cows visitors! What a fun idea!

Social Media Cabot

Step inside for some fun shopping, free samples, and a wonderful tour of the creamery.  You can choose from a cute Cabot button or a wrist band when you pay $2 for the guided tour…children under 12 are free!

Cabot Visitor Center

The tour begins in a small theater, where antique cheese cutting devises are displayed.  There is also a window to view the pasteurization room, as well as many awards and recognition plaques.

Cabot creamery theater

The movie is a brand new documentary film introduced just in the last month (2013) that tells the history of Cabot Creamery and introduces us to several of the wonderful farm families whose cows provide the milk that is made into our favorite Cabot products.  As we were taken into the barns, introduced to the cows by name, and watched the fascinating but difficult life of the dairy farmer,  we were touched by the pride and satisfaction with which the owners of the farms persevered.

My own father,  grandfather, and great-grandfather were Vermont dairy farmers, but my dad chose to follow a career in civil engineering after I was born.  There were several dairy farms in our area, so we grew up helping in the neighbors’ barn or with haying in the summertime.  Still, it wasn’t the same as being responsible for milking cows twice a day, 365 days a year!

movie about Cabot CreameryAfter the movie our guide answered all of our questions, and then announced some exciting news.

New Whey Protein product by Cabot

Cabot is now making Whey Protein Dietary Supplement, a high quality protein that can be added to smoothies and other healthy recipes.  Whey is a bi-product of the cheese-making process and Cabot whey comes directly from the Cabot creamery, ensuring the highest quality.   There is even a special website just for Cabot Whey Protein with recipes and ideas for including whey protein in a healthy diet. 

Living in California, I have been really happy to  find Cabot cheeses in nearby stores.  It wasn’t always this way…we used to carry our Cabot cheese  from Vermont to California in our suitcases!   In the past several years I have really enjoyed the Cabot Vanilla Bean Greek yogurt whenever I visit my mother in Vermont.  Sadly, I can’t find it in California, so I asked our guide if they might ever bring the creamy deliciousness that is Cabot Greek yogurt to the west coast.  I expected to hear “no”.  The second surprise of the day was that  the Cabot Greek-Style yogurts will be coming to the west coast very soon!  She even showed me the names of the stores that will be carrying Cabot yogurt in our town. I can’t wait to see all of these in California!  In fact, the Cabot website has a search function for looking up the nearest outlet for any product they make!

Cabot Greek Yogurts  One of my mother’s  very favorite treats is a breakfast parfait made with  Cabot Vanilla Bean Greek-Style yogurt, fresh berries and Uncle Sam cereal.  Unlike traditional yogurts, Cabot Greek-Style yogurt  has the consistency of custard, but the delicate flavor of yogurt…perfect as a dip for fresh fruit or as a yummy dessert.  It’s a special treat that is healthy too!

favorite breakfast parfait

After the movie, we walked through several hallways, passed small forklifts and employees in white suits,  to the interior of the creamery where the Cabot products are made.  There were large windows on both sides of the hall, where we could see the steps of the cheese-making process.   They were not packaging products on the day I visited,  but they were making cheese.  We were able to watch as they separated the curds from the whey, and we saw the blocks of cheese coming out of the pressing machine.  We stood nearby as a man pulled boxes of packed cheese out of the room, ready to be put into storage for aging.  We could see into the quality control laboratory too.

Cheese Making at Cabot

As we walked back down the long hallway, peering into the windows one last time, we had a new appreciation for the making of Cabot cheese…from the high quality milk that comes from local family farms, to the amazing chemical processes that allow the delicate flavors and textures to develop into exquisite cheese.

end of tour

Everyone was eager to sample the various flavors of cheese by the end of the tour, and we weren’t disappointed!  Look at that assortment!

Cabot Cheese Samples

If you ever wanted to taste every flavor that Cabot makes, now was the time to do it! Just take a toothpick and help yourself!

Cheese Tasting

Our guide had told us about a really special cheddar cheese that Cabot makes called Cabot Artisan Reserve,  but  it is sold only in very limited quantities.  Aged for 3 years, the Cabot Artisan Reserve cheddar cheese was my favorite of the day, so I bought one  to take home to The Farmer.

Artisan Reserve Cheddar Those who have lived in the northeast are familiar with all the Cabot dairy products.  Now that Cabot has expanded to New York and other New England states, there are even more tasty dips, butters, whipped cream, cottage cheese, cream cheese and sour cream to try.   I think most Vermonters are reminded of home when we see Cabot products.

Cabot ProductsWhen I was ready to go back to my car,  it was raining really hard outside!  The rain cooled things off, and the parking lot look as if the sanitizing crew had washed it down,  but we had been told that the sanitizing is done at night.  Cabot Creamery is a busy place, operating 7 days a week.  If you can’t make it to the factory,  stop in at the Cabot Annex Store in Waterbury-Stowe,  or the Cabot Quechee Store.

Cabot After Rain

 

More Mimi Avocado posts with Cabot Creamery:

Cabot Creamery Cookbook and Giveaway

Cheddar Cauliflower Mac and Cheese with Cabot Cheddar

Ultimate Comfort Food: California Avocado Meets Cabot Cheddar

At Home In Vermont: Family, Food, and Familiar Places 

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

12 Comments

  1. Love the story of you two toting that wheel of cheese back from Vermont – is Cabot close to Grafton? We used to stay at the inn and there was a tiny cheese factory down the road.
    Lizthechef recently posted..Ida’s Cherry CakeMy Profile

    • Hi Liz! Grafton is in the south western part of the state, and Cabot is in east-central Vermont. I did taste some cheese from Grafton at the Vermont Cheesemakers’ Festival last weekend. Delicious!

  2. Wow – what an amazing post! Not sure I’ve ever seen a more in-depth review and so much great info all in one place… and the lovely pix! Thanks so much for sharing the Cabot <3 with your readers!

    I especially love the 1981 shot 🙂

    Sharing with our whole team of course!

    Thank you!

    • Thanks Wendy, The 1981 memory is especially…I still have photos of the tour. Cabot Cheese will always have a special place in our hearts…not only because of our engagement cheese-cutting party, but because we have enjoyed Cabot for all these years.

  3. Mimi, you represent the best of California AND Vermont. I loved this post! Thanks so much for sharing your experience.
    Candace Karu recently posted..Slow Cooker Vegetarian ChiliMy Profile

    • Thank you, Candace! It was such fun to meet you last year…will post about our magnificent day in Maine sometime!

  4. Thank you for sharing, I love Vermont and always buy Cabot products whenever I can. I just started eating the vanilla bean yogurt!! Yum! Haven’t been able to get to Vermont in a few years so I enjoyed your trip! Thank you!

  5. Pingback: Cabot Creamery Cookbook and Cheese Giveaway! - Mimi Avocado

  6. Pingback: Is it May? Time for Camp Blogaway! - Mimi Avocado

  7. Pingback: Homemade Pumpkin Pie - Mimi Avocado

  8. Pingback: Tomato Basil Grilled Cheese with Pulled Pork & Avocado - Mimi Avocado

Leave a Reply

Required fields are marked *.


CommentLuv badge

99 Shares
Pin81
Share15
Tweet
+13
Stumble
Share