Editor’s note: We’re chronicling how tech is changing the way we eat and drink as we lead up to this fall’s Food Loves Tech. Our annual deep dive into appropriate food and ag technologies returns to Industry City on November 2–3, 2018—stay tuned for updates and use the code FLT30 to get 30% off tickets at checkout.
From versatile fromages blancs to creamy, delicate Valençays to savory blues, cheese is delightful in any form. It pairs well with about any drink and sets the tone for an evening dinner party with friends or simply satiates a rumbling stomach on a busy day. Finding just the right cheese, however, especially when you want one produced from humanely raised animals, that’s handmade and is maybe just a little different than any you’ve had before, can be a challenge.
Enter the Collective Creamery, a women-powered artisan cheese subscription started two years ago and expanding into New York this autumn.
“We’re selling cheeses that are handmade with care from the healthiest, highest-quality milk,” says Stefanie Angstadt, owner and cheesemaker at Valley Milkhouse.
Angstadt started the cheese subscription service in 2016 with Sue Miller, a farmer and cheesemaker at Birchrun Hills Farm, and Alexandra Jones, a Philly-based food writer and cheesemonger. It began almost like a CSA for cheese. Collective Creamery members in southeast Pennsylvania could select different share sizes of curated packages of handmade cheeses from Angstadt’s and Miller’s farms, as well as guest cheeses sourced from makers they admire throughout the East Coast.
“People love these cheeses because they have amazing flavor and a strong sense of place, and they’re made with nourishing, best-quality milk from pasture-raised animals,” says Jones. “Collective Creamery allows us to bring these cheeses to parts of the region where you can’t easily find these products, while growing revenue for these small agricultural businesses, raising awareness about issues facing small dairy farms in the Northeast, and showing American eaters that well-crafted cheeses from small producers have a place on our tables every day.”
How it Works
While, Collective Creamery offers members a number of different share sizes for pickup as they expand in the NYC-market they are currently offering only one size for shipment. The Monthly includes four cheeses (1 Birchrun, 1 Valley Milkhouse, 1 guest cheese and 1 raw milk cheddar from Conebella Farm) each month.
Subscriptions are available through collectivecreamery.com, with the first Fall–Winter 2018 boxes shipping October 18 (sign up by October 11 to guarantee that first shipment). The last shipment of the season arrives April 11, 2019. You can commit to a full season (and receive a discount) or choose to be billed for the cost of each box as it’s delivered.
To cut down on the pesky packaging waste delivery services are known for and to keep the cost down, Collective Creamery subscribers are given a prepaid FedEx shipping label with their shipment and asked to return their empty shipping boxes, ice packs and packing material.
The women behind the Collective Creamery are currently looking for NYC partners willing to host pickups and ultimately hope to offer additional share sizes in the NYC region.
P.S. Want to learn more about their cheese? Check-out their cheesemaker podcast.