Sunday, September 7, 2008
A bucolic country goat farm in the San Francisco Bay Area?
My quest to find Harley Farms led me to the back road of Pescadero, a small town which, as noted has a back "road," not "roads." It's perhaps most famous for Duarte Tavern's old time artichoke soup but Harley Farms is well on its way to becoming a main attraction. (Just Google it and you'll see).
On my visit, Dee Harley and Ryan were still decompressing from Slow Food Nation weekend. Harley Farms' cheese is in such demand, they'd work all day then spend nights trying to churn out enough for the anxious masses. It's no wonder: Their delicately fresh cheeses have won numerous First Place awards from the American Cheese Society, among others.
Dee showed me the beautiful upstairs hall, overlooking the goats, with a long wooden table and chairs they'd made by hand themselves over the years. Definitely a place to get married or throw a "slow party."
In the store you'll find lots of playful signs and gifts along with a full spread of cheeses to taste. (The pepper coated log is my favorite. Somehow the pepper brings out the goat flavor.) Learn all about the varieties and ask Dee your questions.
When you visit: The beach at Pescadero is very accessible. I highly recommend bringing a cooler, planning a late morning at Harley Farms, picking up cheese, and heading to the beach for a picnic along with extra cheese for home. You'll find great artichoke laden bread in town.
If you can't visit: Enjoy this tour, in which Ryan gives me an overview of Harley Farms. (It'll make you find a way to visit.)