Quark (Vermont Butter & Cheese Creamery)
Founded in 1984 by Allison Hooper and Bob Reese, Vermont Butter & Cheese is located near Websterville, Vermont. Having spent time with a small-scale cheesemaker in Brittany during the 1970's, Allison was working as a state dairy lab technician in Vermont when she responded to a request from Bob Reese to produce some fresh chèvre for a state dinner. At the time, Bob was employed as Marketing Director for the Vermont Dept of Agriculture. The chèvre was a hit, and, after some experimentation, Bob & Allison decided to go into production on a more formal basis, founding Vermont Butter & Cheese. Milk for cheese production comes from 21 family farms in Vermont and surrounding states. Vermont Butter & Cheese makes a variety of fresh and young style cheeses and cultured dairy products, many of which are based on French recipes. They also make an outstanding cultured butter. Cheeses are made from either goat's or cow's milk. “Quark”, which means “fresh curd” in German, is a European style fresh cheese that is often the key ingredient in cheesecake and many recipes that call for cream or a similar fresh dairy products. Vermont Butter & Cheese Creamery make their Quark using fresh cow’s milk curd that is slightly drained in cheesecloth and then whipped with a small amount of crème fraiche (see separate entry) to create its silky texture and nutty taste.