You hear about small family farms all the time, but when was the last time you visited one? Today I visited with Chris Owen and her son Cullen at the Spinning Spider Creamery. They showed me around and I learned what it's like to raise goats. This is seriously a family farm, because all of the family members including three school age sons work hard to feed, milk and care for the goats and make and sell cheese. This is often a 24 hour a day responsibility.
The Owen's have a herd of 55 of the sweetest most affectionate Saanen and Alpine goats. Each one has a name and distinct personality. They even have "show goats". Just spending a little bit of time with the goats, you can easily see why the family loves them so much.
They also love goat cheese and create many different styles from fresh chevre to aged cheddar, feta, blue and more. My favorite was the tangy crottin but I understand why the chevre with fig, honey, pepper and rosemary is the most popular of all the cheeses they make. It was sweet, spicy and decadent. Chris explained that this is the best time of the year for goat cheese because the milk is so rich and creamy. The milk changes seasonally which is good to remember when shopping for goat cheese. Fresh produce isn't the only thing on a farm that has peak seasons. Click on any of the photos above to see the whole set (or click on this link).
FOOD + ASHEVILLE