Supplier Spotlight: Capriole Goat Cheese

Crafting goat cheese by hand in Greenville, Indiana, since 1988.

On a gray winter day in 1976, Larry and I and our three small children drove up a muddy woodland drive to a southern Indiana hill farm. What greeted us was the long-abandoned foundation of a burned-out cabin, a pond overgrown with dead water lilies, a weathered ramshackle barn, and broken glass and bed springs. Surrounded on one side by overgrown pasture and on the other by hillsides of 300 year old oaks, I thought it had "good bones".  Larry said, "It feels like home". The children were horrified. 

The title on the property surprised us. This had been Larry's great, great, great grandparent's 1850 farm, and we had come home! For the next 3 years, we worked to re-erect 2 historic cabins over the foundations of the first Schad homestead. Larry did the milking each morning, then put on a suit and went to his law office, came home and did it all over again. Family and friends thought we'd lost all sanity.

In the mid ‘80s, with over 50 animals and swimming in goat milk, I was canning, preserving, and making goat cheese in the farm kitchen for family and friends. By early 1988, we decided to take the next plunge, building a commercial dairy. By 1990, we had outgrown, expanded the herd, and built a small creamery on the farm. 30 years later, we're still here, still limited by space and geography, and still ladling 400 gallon vats of cheese curd by hand.

Like so many other stories, ours is made of hundreds of moments. Beginnings are hardly ever just one thing, but for Capriole a new story is always, if slowly, in the making. Our vision is still based on family, but that family now includes Capriole's Team of passionate cheesemakers and employees, as well as our grandchildren, all who love the family farm and the cheeses that are its legacy.

 

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