Inspired by her Basque sheepherding and cheesemaking heritage, Marcia Barinaga and her husband, Corey Goodman, purchased a farm in the rolling hills overlooking Tomales Bay in West Marin County. Their intention was to make Basque-style cheese with sheep milk from their own dairy. After attending a cheesemaking class in Vermont, Marcia and Corey accompanied Marcia's father on a trip to the Pyrenees to learn the secrets of cheesemaking from Basque masters. From here, the dream of making cheese in California began to unfold.

At Barinaga Ranch, the sheep graze on pasture all year long. Marcia has been crossbreeding their East Friesian sheep, which are known for their prolific milk production, with the hardy Katahdin, descendents of North African sheep.

Marcia's first cheese is called Baserri, named for the ancient tile-roofed cheesemaking huts in the Pyrenees where Basque herders continue to make cheese in traditional ways. This raw milk cheese has a rich texture, and delicate flavors of hay and nuts balanced by a pleasant tanginess.

Available seasonally.

Farm / Company: Barinaga Ranch

Cheesemaker: Marcia Barinaga

Proprietor: Marcia Barinaga

Affineur: Marcia Barinaga

City, State: Marshall, CA

Region: West

Country: USA

Milk Type: Sheep

Milk Treatment: Raw

Rennet: Traditional

Rind: Natural

Texture: Firm

Aging: 5 months

Size(s): 4-pound wheel