Frequently Asked Questions

The following are frequently asked questions about Cypress Grove Chevre and our cheeses.

If you have a question that's not answered here, feel free to contact us.

Creamery and Cheese Questions

Goat and Dairy Questions

Creamery and Cheese Questions

When was Cypress Grove Chevre founded?

Cypress Grove Chevre was founded in 1983 by Mary Keehn in Arcata, California.

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What kind of cheese do you make?

We make a variety of fresh goat milk cheeses, including our award-winning fresh Purple Haze and Fromage Blanc; ripened cheeses including top-selling Humboldt Fog and a new classic, Truffle Tremor; and firm cheeses including Midnight Moon and Lamb Chopper, a sheep milk cheese.

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How do I store your cheeses?

All cheeses should be kept as cold as possible without freezing (33°-35°F). In order to allow them to breathe, use only waxed paper to wrap ripened cheeses such as Humboldt Fog or Truffle Tremor . Our Fresh Chevre, Midnight Moon and Lamb Chopper should be wrapped tightly in plastic wrap. Store cheese in the coldest part of the refrigerator and prior to serving, bring only the portion you plan to serve up to room temperature for its full flavor to emerge!

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Where can I buy Cypress Grove Chevre cheeses?

To find a store that carries Cypress Grove Chevre products, enter a zip code in the Store Locator field, which can be found at the top of every page of our website. You can also place an order online for shipment via FedEx by visiting our Store, or ask for them at the finest gourmet or natural foods retailers, restaurants, wine shops, or markets that have a good selection of specialty foods.

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What is "terroir"?

Terroir is a common concept in the food world which suggests that a cheese or wine (or other edible product) is influenced by its geographical location. Cypress Grove Chevre fosters terroir by thoughtfully managing a detailed set of practices including land stewardship of our Humboldt County goat dairy and working closely with other local family dairy farms that supply our milk.

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Are your cheeses gluten-free?

Yes, Cypress Grove Chevre products are gluten-free.

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Is Humboldt Fog a blue cheese?

No, the blue line through the center of the cheese and around the outside under the rind is an odorless, tasteless and completely edible vegetable ash.

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Does your cheese contain trans fats?

No, no – a million times no.

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Do you use a vegetarian rennet?

Yes. It is a microbial (vegetarian) rennet.

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Can I visit Cypress Grove Chevre's creamery?

We always welcome visitors to our creamery, though we are unable to offer tours of our production facilities. Our regular office hours are weekdays from 8:30am to 4:30pm Pacific. (We have no tasting room or retail sales at our creamery.)

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Goat and Dairy Questions

How many goats are on the dairy?

We have approximately 200 milking does and 83 doe kids with more on the way.

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What breeds do you have?

Our dairy consists of four breeds: Toggenburg, Saanen, Alpine, and Lamancha (aka "LaMancha"). Toggenburgs are known to produce milk with lots of butter fat, while Saanens are known for high volume. Alpines are known to have consistent and lengthy lactations. Lamancha goats have high milk production and high butterfat content, but they are most well-known for their incredibly small "gopher-like" ears.

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How often are the goats milked?

Our goats are milked twice daily (6 AM and 6 PM).

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How are the goats milked?

We have a 14 stanchion, state-of-the-art milking machine. Milking takes approximately two minutes per goat, and they typically produce about a half gallon of milk at each milking.

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How often does a doe kid, and how many kids to they typically have?

We breed our goats once a year and they have on average two kids at each kidding.

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Do your goats and sheep receive antibiotics or growth hormones?

On occasion, goats may receive antibiotics when they are ill. However, it is illegal to use milk that tests positive for antibiotics in the United States. To ensure the highest milk quality, we test every batch of milk that we pick up for antibiotics, butterfat, protein and bacteria. Our goats never receive growth hormones of any type.

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What do you feed the goats?

Our goats are fed a balanced diet that includes a grain mixture specifically formulated for our herd including alfalfa and timothy hay, plus they always have access to lush Humboldt pasture land.

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What do you do with the manure?

We compost our manure on site and use it to restore the soil balance and enhance the health and productivity of our pastures.

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What are those things hanging from the goats' necks?

They are commonly referred to as wattles. It is believed that these skin appendages are evolutionary remnants of a gland no longer needed or required by the body, hence its outward appearance. They serve absolutely no known function. Some goats have them, some don't. When a doe has wattles, it is likely her kids will have them too.

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Do you still buy goat milk from local producers now that you are now producing your own milk?

Yes. Though we do have a small dairy producing very high quality milk, it supplies a fraction of what's needed to keep our cheese-loving customers satisfied.

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Can I come and visit the dairy?

We welcome visitors at our creamery, but the 24/7 operations at our dairy means that we're really not set up to host drop-in visitors there. During 2014 we will consider if it's feasible to offer dairy tours during a planned open house weekend . . . please watch our website and Facebook page for details. Thanks very much for your interest in visiting us here in beautiful Humboldt County!

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