Judy Schad is among a small handful of cheesemakers in the United States that was at the forefront of the farmstead cheese revolution, and she has vastly contributed to helping shape the future of the movement.
Judy has been making cheese since 1976, when she and her husband moved with their three young children from the suburbs to a hill farm in southern Indiana. They sought a sustainable lifestyle, a milk cow, and lots of gardens. When they ran the title on their new farm they discovered that it had belonged to Judy's husband's great, great grandfather in the 1870s. Over the years, the suburbs have followed them and they are now the last working dairy in the county.
Judy wanted to build a working model that others could follow, but since there were no guidelines for commercial goat dairying, they based their model, through trial and error, on an older, more traditional dairy, centered on herd health, longevity, productivity and on animals who are born, live, and die on the same farm. Judy's goats comprise of Alpine, Saanen and Nubian breeds.
Judy produces about a dozen different goat's milk cheeses across a wide spectrum of styles.
Made from raw milk, Old Kentucky Tomme is aged from four to eight months before release. Young cheeses have a smooth interior paste cloaked in a white-gray, bloomy rind, occasionally dotted with brown. With age, the cheeses become firmer and both the interior and rind become darker.
Flavors are buttery, rich and smooth with hints of cellar and mushrooms and goat.