Made from Raw Sheep Milk
Updated: January 2011: After months of problems with the FDA and State Regulators, Sally Jackson voluntarily decided to close her doors and cease her cheesemaking operation. For full details, please click here.
Sally Jackson is one of the pioneer women of cheesemaking in the United States. In the last 70s, she obtained a grant from the Carter Administration to make cheese on their farm in the Okanagon Highlands of Eastern Washington, near Oroville. Sally and her husband Roger, raise sheep, goats and cows to make handcrafted cheeses. In the early days, they drove their cheeses to Seattle and sold them to restaurants, store and hotels, until they sold out. Now they stay home, make cheese, mostly to order, and ship via Fedex and tend their small herds.
At the 2010 American Cheese Society, The Lady attended a seminar about the history of Washington State cheeses. Sally Jackson’s Sheep Cheese, wrapped in chestnut leaves was one of the cheeses featured and on the sample plate.
The chestnut leaves that wrap this raw milk cheese are from a neighbor. The leaves are dried and then re-constituted when needed during the cheesemaking process. The cheese is aged three months with a creamy outward area surrounding a crumbly inside. The leaves help the cheese retain its moisture.
Because the milk is raw, you can taste the grass pastures where the sheep graze. The cheese is mellow and has a sheep finish but in a wonderful way. As the Seattle “No Pets” Sheraton wouldn’t allow me to attend, I can only report what The Lady told me and she fell in love with this cheese. If she had to choose only one sheep cheese to eat the rest of her life, this would be the one…
Serving Suggestions: Enjoy this cheese naked on a cracker and maybe just a touch of jam.
Wine Pairing: Chateau Ste Michelle Sauvignon Blanc
Beer Pairings: Maybe a bock.
Source: Raw Sheep Milk