California: Petaluma Cowgirl Creamery

Petaluma California: Cowgirl Creamery

Any foodie, like me, who loves cheese (that’s gotta be the Midwesterner in me) will LOVE Cowgirl Creamery.  Many Californians know Cowgirl Creamery as it’s sold in their San Francisco’s Ferry Building Marketplace Cowgirl Creamery location and their Point Reyes Station location. It’s also sold to over 500 stores, independent cheese shops, farmers markets and restaurants, and nationally through Whole Food Markets. After experiencing Cowgirl Creamery for as long as I can remember, having bought it regularly in New York at Beechers Cheese I was thrilled to partake in their Petaluma Cowgirl Creamery Tour. The Petaluma tour is the most in-depth, letting the viewer watch the cheese making process as well as see their main warehouse where the majority of their cheeses are made and distributed from.  This tour is $30 vs. the Point Reyes Station $5 tour. We were told the Point Reyes Station tour is much more brief since they only make one of the nine cheeses Cowgirl Creamery offers.

Petaluma Tour Highlights:

– History & overview of Cowgirl Creamery & The Cowgirl story

– Watching cheese be made (right in front of you) by tour guide Vivien

– Learning the 4 cheese ingredients: Milk, Cultures, Rennet & Salt

– Mount Tam Triple Cream Tasting at 3 various stages of the cheese making process (after 1 day of aging, after 1 week of aging, after 1 month of aging)

– Observed packaging of best-selling Mount Tam Cheese by team


Petaluma California Cowgirl CreameryThe team curding the cheese as it comes out of the cheese vats

IMG_0705Racks of the Mount Tam Cheese aging

IMG_0709Wrapping and packaging of the Cheese, ALL done by hand


Petaluma California Cowgirl CreameryVivien Straus (of Straus Family Creamery), our fabulous Tour Guide

IMG_0724Vivien demonstrating how cheese is made


IMG_0737Vivien sharing the Mt. Tam samples

IMG_0742The infamous Cowgirl Creamery Mt. Tam cheese (my favorite)


IMG_0745A few (kidding, there are a TON) of the awards Cowgirl Creamery has received


IMG_0748Marin County Agricultural Land Trust Map

Cowgirl CreameryOur amazing gift at the end of the tour. Cowgirl Cooler (perfect for future picnics) and Mt. Tam Cheese (YUM!)

1 Response
  • Chelsea Pearl
    August 4, 2014

    I have yet to take this tour, but your post has me totally sold! Cowgirl Creamery Red Hawk is my all time favorite cheese.

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