Lively Run Farm is wedged between Cayuga and Seneca Lakes in the heart of New York State's Finger Lakes Region. It was one of the first commercial goat dairies in New York State when it opened in 1982, and was best known for its French-style chèvre and Mediterranean Feta. In 1995 the farm was bought by Steve and Suzanne Messmer. Suzanne soon began making Cayuga Blue.
While it was initially conceived as a goat milk version of classic French Roquefort, over the years Cayuga Blue has developed a unique identity. Steve and Suzanne's son, Pete Messmer, is now head cheesemaker at Lively Run. In producing Cayuga Blue, his goal is to make a well-veined, natural-rinded blue cheese that is both subtle and complex.
This award-winning wheel is mellow, nutty and earthy, complemented by notes of portobello mushroom and the slight spiciness of the P. roqueforti mold. Because it's made with goat's milk, the blue mold tends to be less sharp than it might be in a cow's or sheep's milk blue, although the flavors of goat's milk are often quite pronounced.
Cayuga Blue stands up well to fairly powerful wines and beers. For wines, try it with a reisling or lemberger from the Finger Lakes Region, or a decent pinot noir. For beers, pair it with an oatmeal stout or a porter. For liquor, try a Scotch (Glenfiddich or perhaps a smoky Islay variety such as Laphroig).