There are small but important distinctions that organic food producers make, and one of these is the moniker “farmstead”. This means that the food product is made from ingredients produced by the same producer that makes the finished product. In the case of Nicasio Valley Cheese Company, it means that they raise the cows and produce the organic milk from which their cheese is made. And it all happens here in Marin. Hence, the Nicasio Valley Cheese Company can claim to be “California’s only certified organic farmstead cheesemakers”.
All this wouldn’t make much difference if they didn’t offer a superior product. But, they do. They produce six delectable cheeses, in the Swiss-Italian style of the ranch’s owners’ heritage. The ranch and cheese company are owned and operated by the Lafranchi family, descendents of Fredolino and Zelma Dolcini Lafranchi who started the Lafranchi Dairy in Nicasio in 1919. They have 1,150 certified organic acres of pasture for raising their dairy cows, who happily munch away on the grass and produce delicious organic milk.
The six cheeses are available at the creamery store in Nicasio, and also fortunately at pretty much all of the up-scale or gourmet grocery stores in Marin and throughout much of Northern California. Stop by their Nicasio store Thursday through Sunday to pick up cheese or a custom-made cheese gift basket.
Where: 5300 Nicasio Valley Road, Nicasio (map)
Hours: Thursday – Sunday 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.