Tumalo Farms, located near the Cascade Mountains in Oregon, was started by Flavio DeCastilhos, who became inspired during a trip to Brazil's wine country. Flavio, who had a very successful career within the IT world, became fascinated with the local cheese industry.
Starting a farm and a business from scratch gave DeCastilhos the opportunity to build a state-of-the-art cheesemaking operation. He spent two years researching and learning about cheesemaking and farming, during which time he became interested in producing traditional Dutch and Italian cheeses, and in experimenting with local ingredients to develop new recipes.
Pondhopper is one of Tumalo Farms' most popular cheeses. In accordance with using local ingredients, cheeses are washed using a local microbrew. The resulting cheese has a firm and dense paste and a hard rind. In terms of flavor, there are obvious hints of cascade hops that balance Pond Hopper's sharpness.
Cheeses mature over two to three months, during which time they are wiped and turned daily. The cellar temperature is 58°F, with 86% relative humidity.