Tess’ Kitchen Store partners with Wheyward Girl Creamery | TheUnion.com

Tess’ Kitchen Store partners with Wheyward Girl Creamery

In their continued commitment to partnering with local businesses, Tess' Kitchen Store will soon begin carrying cheeses exclusively from Wheyward Girl Creamery.

Wheyward Girl will be providing fine, hand-selected cheeses from around the world with a focus on U.S., and specifically, California cheeses. They will also offer select, small batch cheeses that they produce right here in Nevada City.

"We are very excited to be able to partner with a local cheese monger and producer," said Tess' Kitchen Store owner Steve Rosenthal. "A lot of people don't know about the incredible American made cheeses available. [Wheyward Girl owner] Barbara is incredibly tuned in to the fine cheeses being produced in the U.S.

Customers can take advantage of this great change as Tess' is currently holding a sale on all of their outgoing cheeses to make way for the Wheyward Girl inventory.

About Wheyward Girl

Barbara Jenness and her husband relocated to Nevada County several years ago from Michigan to be closer to their seven grandchildren in Berkeley. She owned the first farmstead goat cheese production in Michigan, and got started on a fluke. Jenness had been a soap maker, and bought goats to ensure a steady supply of goat milk for her craft. She needed to find something to do with the excess milk, so she started making cheese. "I just decided to become a cheese maker," Jenness said.

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She found that she really loved making cheese even more than soap, and earned her certification as a "master cheesemaker" from the Vermont Institute of Artisan Cheese at the University of Vermont. She taught cheese making classes at Michigan State University for several years before she moved, and the school still flies her back for a week every summer to teach an intensive artisan cheese class.

In 2015, Jenness opened the Kickstarter-funded Wheyward Girl Creamery in downtown Nevada City. The original plan was to be a cheese producing shop with the retail side an added bonus; however, due to a lack of a consistent milk source, the retail shop and cheese making classes took center stage, and that's just fine with her. "This is my retirement, so I'm not too uptight about it. It's a dream to produce our own cheese, and I would like to do that in my lifetime," Jenness said. "I will continue to search for that elusive milk source, but in the meantime we have a lot of fun introducing people to new cheeses."

There are many misconceptions about cheese that Jenness seeks to educate people about, such as the belief that eating cheese will raise your cholesterol, when in fact it does not. "That's what we refer to as the French Paradox," Jenness said. "The French eat more cheese per capita than any other place and they have lower cholesterol than most other countries."

In addition, Jenness adds that many people believe that they cannot eat cheese because they are lactose intolerant, but there is lactose only in fresh cheeses. The harder the cheese, the lower the lactose, she explains. Surprisingly, European cheeses are less expensive than American cheeses because the European government subsidizes their cheese makers the way our government does with its farmers.

Jenness is excited to be partnering with Tess' Kitchen Store, and will replenish the cheese case there twice each week to ensure a steady, fresh supply of cheeses there. "It's nice to see small businesses collaborating," she said. "I believe that that's the only way we can all make it."

Tess' Kitchen Store is located at 115 Mill Street in Downtown Grass Valley, and is open Monday-Saturday from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m.-5 p.m. For more information visit their website at tesskitchenstore.com or call 530-273-6997.

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