Updates & Blog

Posted 8/9/2013 8:29am by Kevin & Kristyn Henslee.



Surprise, Surprise! Guess who won an American Cheese Society Award? Yellow House Cheese!! I am definitely beyond excited and completely shocked. I feel like winning this award tells me that maybe all my hard work, frustration and anxiety are working in my favor. I joked with Jean McKenzie a few weeks ago before farmers market. She asked if she wanted me to bring back my awards when I won. Knowing it was a complete long-shot I laughed and said, “Please do.” Boy was I shocked as I was sitting in the show arena at the Medina County Fair waiting for Corinne to sell her chickens. My phone starts beeping, Brian Schlatter from Canal Junction Farmstead Cheeses sent me a message of congratulations on my second place award. I know Brian is much too serious about cheese to kid me, but it really didn’t hit me until Jean herself sent over a text also with congratulations. I looked over at Kevin and told him, he looked more shocked than I. It really has been an exhausting journey and I want to thank all of my customers for their kind words and support. Things are looking up here at Yellow House!!

 

 


Well it was a long week at the Medina County Fair and if you follow our blog & Facebook posts, you know that Corinne took almost every market project under the sun. We were busy every day with a show or a sale and thankfully made it through the week. Corinne did well with her chickens, bull calf and market goat. Kevin and I were so proud of her learning to show market hogs and learning how to dust off her jeans and her ego during beef showmanship (I tried to tell her it will not be the last time she gets drug around the ring). Many thanks go out to our buyers, the Sulzner & Synk families, Grandma Sheryl, The Young Family, WG Dairy, and The Guccion Family. Next year Ellen also will be in 4H so look out Medina County, she is all work and ready to show.

Kevin and I met during the fair so it definitely holds a special place in our hearts. My favorite way to describe the week is like a family reunion with folks you actually want to see. This is the one time of year that we get to visit with many members of our ‘fair family’. It is really fun to see that our kids will be showing together in 4H and I welcome the competition. It was fun to hang out with the Packard and Siedel families. We always say we’ll hang out, but we all know that we are too busy on the farms to ever get away for a night out.


Since we have stopped milking for the year, we are trying to head out to a few more markets during the week. You can now find us at the Cleveland Clinic main campus on Wednesdays from 10:30-1:30 and at the Chagrin Farmer’s Market on Sundays from 10am-1pm. I think we will be at these markets every other week, so check facebook for confirmation of where we will be. As always we will also be at Highland Square in Akron on Thursdays from 4-7pm, Medina Square on Saturday from 9am-1pm and at Shaker Square on Saturdays from 8am-Noon.


Lamb will continue to be available at market through the fall. I would love to hear how you are preparing your lamb for the dinner table. I get so many requests for suggestions; I would love to pass along your favorites.



Hoping for a sunny Saturday market in the morning, The Henslee Family



Posted 7/26/2013 5:03pm by Kevin & Kristyn Henslee.

Fair time is next week! Corinne has been busy getting her projects ready and Ellen has been furiously helping her. Next week she exhibits all of her animals and at the end of the week she sells all of her market animals. Here is her buyers letter, please consider coming out. The auction is a lot of fun and many of the kids use their money in their college funds and to start their projects for next year. If you have any questions, please track down Kevin or I and we will help you out. The auction is in the show arena at the fair grounds, you can't miss it!

 

 

My name is Corinne Henslee and I am a first year 4-H member in the Sharon Livewires 4-H club. I am 9 and am going into fourth grade at Norwayne Elementary School. I like to play soccer and read Harry Potter books. I am writing to tell you about my 4-H projects to let you know how you can support other 4-drfH’ers just like me at the junior fair livestock sale at the Medina County Fair.

The Medina County Fair runs July 29-August 4this year. I will be showing chickens, turkeys, pigs & a meat goat. I also have a steer and a lamb that I am entering in the carcass show the week before the fair. Each of my projects will sell at the livestock sale. I hope that you would purchase one of my animals to enjoy on your dinner table.

Me and my family have been taking good care of my animals. I always make sure they have lots of clean water and my parents help me feed them. We work as a family to raise Simmental cattle and we also have a sheep dairy and make blue cheese. We think it’s important for animals to be happy and be treated nicely. The meat from my animals will be delicious.

If you buy my animals at the fair they will be processed at a state inspected facility and will come back to you ready to eat. Chickens and turkeys will come back fresh and the goat, lamb, beef and pork will come back packaged and frozen. You can choose the cuts of meat and have it packaged just the way you like. I will show all of my animals before they sell. I will try my best to win ribbons. The turkey and chickens see on Friday night, August 2nd at 6:00 pm and the pigs, lamb, goat and steer will sell on Saturday, August 4 starting at 9:00 am.

If you have any questions about being a buyer you can call the 4-H extension office at 330.725.4911 or my parents at 330.990.7821.

My favorite part of the fair is riding the Ferris wheel and spending the night in the cow barn. I hope you and your family can make it out to the fair this year.

                                    I hope to see you at the 4-H Sale, Corinne Henslee

Posted 7/23/2013 9:50am by Kevin & Kristyn Henslee.

Last week was a killer hot week. So what do you do when it's constantly 90-100 degrees out? Make hay while the sun shines!

We were able to bale the second cutting off the new farm property. We had a little bit of trouble getting the hay dry enough to bale. The rain early in the week and the high humidity left the hay a tad damp. So we crossed our fingers and left the hay out to dry as long as we could. More rain was headed our way Saturday morning, so Friday late afternoon we started baling and got everything stacked in the barn before dark.

Here is a photo essay of the days work.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted 7/5/2013 9:17am by Kevin & Kristyn Henslee.

 

Happy July!

We are fighting to stay cool here at Yellow House. The sheep are hot and have really slowed down milking, but with that challenge inspired a new creation, our first mixed milk cheese. This yet to be named cheese is a 40% sheep’s milk 60% cow’s milk blend. Cheeses are bluing nicely but will not be ready for market until the end of September. Such a long wait!!

We get a lot of questions about the “blue” of our cheese at market. So find it too mild, others too sharp, we’ll here’s our philosophy… we work extremely hard to get the best milk from our own flock and from our cow farmer family. Our milk is clean, fresh and creamy. We want you to enjoy the milk in the cheese as much as, or even more than the blue in the cheese. The blue adds a really special and unique flavor, but the milk is really the heart of the cheese. This makes our blue not so typical and we understand that—we hope that you can appreciate that.

Other great news at Yellow House:

We bought a new farm!! We are expanding the operation to include a new 22 acre farm where we plan on moving the sheep and the dairy operation. Plan includes rotational grazing and planting and harvesting our own feedstuffs. The barns and house date to the 1800’s and the bank barn is amazing. There is a mini milking parlor with a pit, so that is our first plan of attack is to get that building a new roof and up to date. There is also a pond so the girls have discovered the joys of fishing. We will still be making our cheeses at our current location—no immediate plans to build a new creamery any time soon.

Lamb is back in stock. We have chops, ground and shanks back in stock. Come pick up some lamb for the grill this weekend. Not sure how to cook it? We have information with us at market or you can check our Pinterest site for delicious recipes and tips.

Fair time is approaching. Did you ever lend your hands to greater service? Corinne is in her first year of 4-H this year. What an experience so far. She mastered the sheep skill-a-thon and has taken pretty good care of all of her projects. She is taking chickens, a turkey, a meat goat, pigs, a carcass steer and a carcass lamb. The carcass projects are graded on the meat quality alone, and that’s her favorite, meat! If you would like to learn more on how to support the Medina County 4-H’ers, check out the fair schedule here. If you are interested in purchasing one of Corinne’s projects, check out this page with all the info.

Ellen turned 8! That’s big news around here from this week. I can’t believe it. She will be old enough for 4-H. Can’t wait!!

We will see you all at Shaker Square and Medina this week and back again at Highland Square next Thursday. Bring an umbrella out to market this week if it’s a little rainy, your farmers still need your support.

Much love from the Henslee Family!

 

              


Posted 6/7/2013 8:51am by Kevin & Kristyn Henslee.



Hello from the farm!


The cheese has finally decided that it is ready for market! Yellow House Blue, our signature sheep's milk blue cheese will be available at markets this week. Sharp with a peppery finish, this sophisticated raw sheep's milk cheese is sure to please. Pairs nicely with your favorite sweet red wine. Chefs, we have a nice selection of whole and half wheels ready to ship. If you are interested in either sheep or cow's milk cheeses, please call the farm at 330.769.9733 to set up a delivery drop off time at our Shaker Square or Highland Square markets. Pick up is always available from the farm.

Wooster Pike Blue our salty, sharp cow's milk blue will also be available this weekend.


Want your blue cheese ready in crumbles? We have cow's milk blue crumbled and ready for your salad for $6.25. Ready to grill this weekend? Burger slices are packaged and ready for your delicious black and blue burgers. 


We appreciate all of our customers that have purchased lamb from us this spring. We are currently sold out of ground lamb and chops. We will continue to bring shanks and leg of lamb to market. Check our Pinterest site for yummy recipes to use these delightful cuts. We are hoping to have more ground and chops available near the beginning of August and be fully stocked up towards October. Lamb is a seasonal product and we are growing most lambs this year on pasture for delicious grass-fed flavor.


School's Out for Summer! Yeah! Kevin and the girls are both finally done with the school year, so I will have more help around the farm. We are working hard to bring you the best blue cheese Ohio has to offer as well as fresh, family raised lamb.


Customers have also requested our full market schedule. We are at market 3 times per week at Highland Square on Thursday evenings from 4-7pm, Shaker Square on Sautrday morning from 8am-Noon, and Medina Farmer's Market Saturday mornings from 9am-1pm.


Hoping for a great market weekend! See you there! The Henslee Family.





Posted 5/24/2013 11:21am by Kevin & Kristyn Henslee.



Ready to shop this weekend?


Yellow House Cheese will be at both Shaker Square Market Saturday from 8-Noon and at the Medina Farmer's Market from 9-1.


Both cow's milk cheeses and lamb will be available for purchase. We are running low on lamb chops, so this may be your last chance to grill our chops until the fall. 

 

Hoping for sunshine weather!! See you this weekend!

Posted 5/16/2013 12:54pm by Kevin & Kristyn Henslee.

Here's a quick look at what has been going on the farm this week.

 

         

We have done much work in the cheese cave this week. Did you know each of our wheels is poked at least 40 times each to get the correct amount of bluing throughout the cheese? This poking is done by hand with a stainless steel skewer. It takes a while to get though each batch. Not the most fun part of making the cheese, but definitely the most important. Each wheel is poked twice about a week to 10 days apart. When the bluing checks out to be ok, we wrap the wheel in foil and move it from the cave to cold storage.

 

    

Here are some fun pictures of me and my helpers milking and making cheese. My girls are such a help around the farm. I sincerely hope that someday they will look back and realize how hard we have been working to get this business started.

 

        


It is so important to keep our sheep happy. Happy sheep make good milkers. Here are my happy sheep and their sweet lambs (and next year’s milkers).

 


This Saturday we will see you out at Shaker Square market. We have some really fun vendor neighbors, so make sure you check them out too. If you find the pasta, salsa and unbelievable woodwork, you'll find us!


Foodie Friends, We would love to see your Yellow House Cheese creations. Please share photos of your cheese plates, burgers, dips and more on our facebook page, instagram #yellowhousecheese or email them to us at cheese@yellowhousecheese.com


I have most of my chef orders in for the weekend, if you haven't contacted me yet, get your order in by Friday at 6pm. 


Thank you all for your support!! The Henslee Family

Posted 5/1/2013 9:40am by Kevin & Kristyn Henslee.


Around the Farm

It has been some trying times around the farm this week. Lambs have been born, rejected and reclaimed by mothers that are not theirs, cows have got out of the fence, kids with pinkeye, lots of sheep have jumped off the milk stand and parts of the fence are obviously down (hence the cows getting out). Weeks like this are the times that I wonder what exactly we are doing. I love this life, just not weeks like this. I am not sure if all of our customers, inspectors and fans realize that it’s just Kevin, the girls and I. We don’t have any employees and we do all the work ourselves. Feeding, fixing, milking, cheesemaking, chauffeuring to soccer practice—we do it all. But after I sulk, I know that there is nothing else I would rather be doing. I find much satisfaction from being a cheesemaker and shepherd—but keeping it all in perspective this week has been challenging! Thankfully the weather this week is beautiful and sun-shiny.

 

Farmer’s Market Season is Here!

Yellow House Cheese will be at three farmer’s markets this season. Kevin is currently selling at the Shaker Square Market on Saturday mornings from 8-Noon. Kristyn will be selling on Saturdays at the Medina Market from 9-1 which starts on May 25. Finally we will be selling in Akron in the Highland Square area from 4-7 pm on Thursday evenings. Cow’s milk blue cheeses are now available at market. Sheep’s milk blue cheeses should be ready near the beginning of June. Select cuts of family raised lamb are also available. Cuts include chops, ground, shanks and leg of lamb. 

Wrapping up Lambing Season

We are nearly done lambing! Only about 5 or 6 more ewe lambs are due and we are now milking 50 sheep. Things are going well in the barn and ram lambs have already been moved out to pasture. Ewe lambs will soon follow sometime this week.

Lamb for Sale

We are selling our family raised lamb at our farmer’s market booth. Cuts include chops, ground, shanks and leg of lamb. We will have grass fed lamb available towards the end of summer and early fall. If you are interested in buying a whole or half of a lamb, please email us at cheese@yellowhousecheese so we can get you on a customer list. There will be enough lamb to supply chefs and restaurants this year. Make sure you set your reservations now to reserve your lambs. Any questions about lamb, you call Kevin at 330.990.7821.

Requests for visits

I am overwhelmed by the amount of requests that we get asking to stop by to visit the farm. While our slogan is, “Sharing Our Farm With You,” I would like to make a general comment. We live here, work here, raise animals here and make food here. All of those factors do not always make it easy for bringing visitors to the farm. We are very busy, jobs always need to be done. With that being said, we will be having some open house hours/ days set up towards the end of summer and fall. For all of those callers that want to stop by for a piece of cheese I encourage you to come visit us at our farmer’s markets.

Keep in Touch
You can also follow us on Pinterest, Facebook and Instagram (yellowhousecheese).




Posted 3/20/2013 10:18am by Kevin & Kristyn Henslee.


Yellow House Cheese March Newsletter

Well the calendar says that it is spring, I really doubt it around here. Besides bunches of bouncing lambs, nothing is really shouting spring. When talking with another local farmer we were complaining about the cold. I summarized to say, "At this point I would rather have warm mud than cold mud." But so is life in Ohio.


Lambing is almost half way done. We have had great successes and few losses-- when you are in the sheep business that's pretty good. We are nearing 70 lambs and are running about 50-50 ewes and ram lambs. Ewes have been prolific with 6 sets of triplets, many sets of twins and only 4 singles. Lambing has made for some sleepless nights, but to see a mama sheep nuzzling her lamb or watching healthy babies jump across the barn makes it all worth it.


To start milking earlier this year we put babies on a lac-tek machine. So instead of their mother's milk, the babies are getting formula or milk replacer on demand. Everyone is growing quickly and has made the adjustment quite easily. In fact we have a lamb group ready to come off of milk and start on grain and hay. All of our lambs will be grass fed this year (if we ever see sunshine, or grass, or it stops being 31 degrees every day). So there will be plenty of lamb available come fall time. If you are interested in lamb, whole, half or select cuts, send us a message so we can put you on a customer list for when lambs are finished.


Kristyn has been busy in the make room already making batches of sheep's milk cheese as well as cow's milk. The cave is filling up nicely and we are gearing up for the busy farmer's market season. We are most likely going to 3 or 4 markets this year, throw in 2 little girls on separate soccer teams and we have quite the busy Saturdays coming up.


Our first market will start in April and Kevin will have lamb cuts and cow's milk blue cheeses to sell at the North Union Farmer's Market on Shaker Square. Yellow House Cheese will be selling there every Saturday from 8am-Noon. Sheep's milk cheeses will not be available until June. We will also be using the Shaker Market as a drop off point for our Cleveland restaurant customers. This will make everything easier on delivery and be much more consistent. Please have your orders in on Thursday before the Saturday market.


Hopefully you already like us on facebook, if not, please do. I post fun pictures from around the farm. You can also find us on Instagram. Search for khens. We are set to private, so just ask to follow us and I will approve you.


As always thank you for your support and looking forward to seeing many of you at markets soon.


Best Wishes from The Henslee Family & Yellow House Cheese

Posted 2/14/2013 11:31am by Kevin & Kristyn Henslee.

Valentine's Day is supposed to be cheesy, right?

 

Thank you for all the love this past year!


Yellow House Cheese & The Henslee Family