There’s a lot to love about Cowgirl Creamery’s Organic Mt. Tam cheese. In 1997, founders Sue Conley and Peggy Smith set up shop in an abandoned barn just an hour north of San Francisco in Point Reyes Station, California. From the beginning, they wanted to make delicious handcrafted cheese with an earth-friendly commitment from production to delivery. Sue and Peggy pioneered the American artisan cheese movement with their small collection of cheeses — four soft-aged and three fresh — all made from certified organic local milk. On cheese-making days, the certified organic milk arrives just a few hours after the early morning milking at the nearby Straus Family Creamery. The Straus’ cows graze on lush grass that helps lend a unique, mushroom-like flavor the expresses the terrior (pronounced tear-WAHR). Terrior refers to the way specific elements, like grass or local vegetation, can have influence on the flavors of the cow’s milk and developing flavors in cheese. Mt. Tam is produced using a gouda-like technique where the curds are scooped softly by hand to help keep the rich flavors in tact. Once the cheeses begin to age, they are turned twice a week by hand for optimal aging. The result is an elegant, dense cheese with an earthy taste. With its buttery flavor and creamy texture, Cowgirl Creamery Organic Mt. Tam is the perfect addition to a variety of meals. It’s also sturdy and packs extremely well so you can toss it in your backpack for a hike, or your picnic basket for an outdoor dining adventure. Try pairing it with an organic lager like Samuel Smith’s or try a fruity, organic Pinot Noir or Syrah. One bite and you’ll be tipping your hat to Cowgirl Creamery. Go Behind the Rind for serving tips, photos and more about this creamy and delicious cheese, and follow our Global Cheese Buyer, Cathy Strange on Twitter @WFMCheese. Whether it’s on cheese plate or in a recipe, we find Mt. Tam luscious and buttery and beautifully versatile. How do you enjoy Cowgirl Creamery Organic Mt. Tam?