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Say 'Cheese!'


Here's a sneak peek at what's coming in this week's Food section:

It's been a tough road for small dairy farmers -- between the economic downturn, water shortages, and the cost of hay, cattle feed and gas skyrocketing. Karen Bianchi-Moreda wondered whether her family farm in Sonoma would make it. Then she found cheese. She converted an old building into a cheese-making facility and tested recipes until she came up with Estero Gold: It is a nutty, buttery, golden-hued cheese with rich Alpine mountain character and a sliceable, firm texture that has found a second home in the tasting rooms of local wineries. Read on about local farmers who are turning their businesses  around by embracing artisanal cheese-making.

Photo: Paul Bianchi and daughter Karen Bianchi-Moreda with one of the family cows, at the Valley Ford Cheese Co. Credit: Rose Halady / For The Times.

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