Established in 1999, Andante Dairy is owned and operated by Soyoung Scanlan. The creamery is located at the Volpi Ranch near Petaluma, just north of San Francisco, California, which is also the source for Scanlan's goat's milk. Cow's milk is brought in from the 400-strong herd of Jersey cows at nearby Spring Hill Dairy. Prior to becoming a cheesemaker, Soyoung had a successful career working as a biochemist in both the engineering and science worlds. She also has a strong background in classical music as an avid pianist, making her a rare combination of talents that seem to converge over the cheesemaking vat. Having studied the properties of milk and cheesemaking intensely for two years, including a stint at Cal Poly, in San Luis Obispo, Soyoung has become a highly respected figure in the artisan cheese industry. She is known for producing small quantities of extremely high quality cheeses, many of which are made in the French style. By choice, Soyoung works alone. Her cheesemaking facility is clean, simple, highly organized and has plenty of space to move about. Her early cheesemaking career was greatly encouraged and inspired by Thomas Keller, the owner and chef of the French Laundry in Yountville. Keller and Scanlan both have a tremendous eye for detail and perfection, and it is these qualities that shine though in all aspects of Scanlan's cheese. At Andante, Scanlan produces a range of cheeses made from cow, sheep and goat's milk, or combinations of the three.
Vivace is a seasonal mixed milk cheese in the shape of a large puck. It has a thin bloomy rind covering a somewhat dense and rich paste that melts on the tongue. The flavor is rich, but fresh with a touch of sweet dry hay that lingers on the palate.
This cheese pairs very nicely with wheat beers or light red wines.