Now located in the state-of-the-art new creamery in Sonoma wine country, Laura Chenel's Chèvre has been in operation since the late 1970’s. Laura Chenel was one of a small group of women cheesemakers to spearhead the production of goat's milk cheeses in the United States. Having always been passionate about goats, Laura started her dairy in a former snail-processing plant in Santa Rosa. In 2006 she sold the company to French family cheese producers, Laiteries H. Triballat, who continue the tradition of Laura Chenel’s cheesemaking of both fresh and aged cheese. Milk for production comes from family goat dairies located in California and Nevada. High quality milk is crucial to excellent cheese production and the company has very close relationships with their producers to ensure excellent animal health, nutrition and general well being.
This cheese is named for the popularity it has enjoyed among chefs and caterers over the past two decades. It’s Laura Chenel’s highest-moisture, freshest cheese, with microbial enzymes and salt being the only ingredients other than goat’s milk. It can be substituted for cream cheese due to a similar texture, with the added bonus of being lower in calories, lower in cholesterol and higher in protein content.
With a milky, subtle smell, this cheese is super smooth in texture. It’s bright and lemony-tart, having a surprisingly robust flavor with a clean, inoffensive goatiness and a bright tang at the finish.
This cheese is so popular with chefs due to its diverse cooking applications; it melts perfectly into sauces for pasta and poultry, mixes with herbs for topping crostini or filling tortellini, and makes a wonderful goat cheesecake. For drink pairings, try it with a Sauvignon Blanc, which has a tartness and balanced acidity mirroring that of the cheese.