Veronique blogs for Culture (where Wedge in the Round blogs about the 2012 Birth of a Cheese). This is part 2 of 3 on here visit to Point Reyes Farmstead Cheese Co.
Production of Original Blue, the cheese for which Point Reyes Farmstead Cheese Co. is best known, is first on the priority list for production. How does the cheese get so fluffy and creamy, you might ask? Homogenization. Pt. Reyes strips the cream from the milk, homogenizes the milk, puffing up the molecules with air, and reintroduces the cream afterward. Fat molecules can thus bind to the milk better, creating that all-around creamy, smooth texture. The milk is separated using a vegetable rennet. The cultures, salt, and penicillin are all added to the homogenized milk. The milk separates, the curds are cut super small—they looked pea-sized to me—and the whey is drained. The curds are placed in molds, are flipped and let to solidify drain further overnight. The next day, they are solid wheels.