I am taking a trip to the Loire Valley in May and hope to visit some cheesemakers. However, I’m having difficulty accessing information about farms that allow visitors and how to arrange these visits. Is there a good website or way to contact cheesemakers?
There are no websites that I know of and it might be hard to access some of these farms without an intro. However, assuming you know some French, my suggestion would be to go to the local farmers markets and talk to the cheese vendors and make direct contact. Chat them up a bit (don’t ask if you can visit in your opening sentence!) and then broach the subject. You can also ask at local stores for ideas for places to visit. Otherwise, as you drive around the countryside you’re bound to see signs for cheese producers.
If your plans allow for this, it would be a great idea to take some good examples of American farmstead cheeses with you for them to try – harder, aged cheeses will withstand the journey better. Although this may sound strange, it could be a really good ice breaker and I’m sure they would be interested.
Have a great trip. Please send us photos!Photo Credit: anne arnould via Compfight cc