MiVT: Lazy Lady Farm Cheese
WESTFIELD, Vt. (WCAX) - Happy goats equal good cheese.
That’s the case at the Northeast Kingdom’s Lazy Lady Farm, anyway.
“Goats aren’t stressed out too much. I am, they aren’t,” joked Laini Fondiller, co-owner of the farm.
This off-the-grid, 40-goat farm puts out 300 gallons of goat milk a week and turns it into delicious goat cheese.
We got a tour of the farm where the goats live and the cheese is made.
“And I’ve been salting so long that I kind of really have a good eye for the amount of salt that I need,” said Fondiller.
Fondiller got her start after moving to France from Indiana in the ’80s to work on farms. She remembers clearly looking through magazines to find work.
“In there was an ad for a job in Corsica on a goat dairy. So I decided to take it, and they made cheese and that’s when I fell in love with cheese and cheesemaking and goats,” she said.
After spending a while there, she moved back to the states and got a job at Vermont’s Butterworks Farm before opening up her own.
It started as a 10-by-16 room, making goat cheese with little resources and little money.
But that was then, and this is now. Fondiller says she doesn’t have the mindset to get too large.
“It feels good that I was able to just keep plugging away, and I’m happy with what I have, I’m comfortable with what I have and I guess that’s all the further I wanted to be,” she said, reflecting on her success.
Lazy Lady cheeses are available all around Vermont but have reach as far as California.
Fondiller makes five standard varieties of cheese, with some fun limited editions a few times a year.
If you’ve never had goat cheese, it’s an acquired taste. But, Fondiller says that flavor is a major benefit.
“Even if it’s fresh, you see it in the fresh tubs, it still has goat flavor. So, it’s a little bit easier. Because of my cave not being that big, I can get stuff in and out in two weeks and still have plenty of flavor to go around,” she said.
While goat cheese is delicious, she says the small size of the farm and attention to detail is what makes Lazy Lady cheese the best.
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