I've Goat To Tell You About Clover Top Creamery
If there are three things I love in this world, they're
- Good Food from sustainable sources
- Travel (especially when it involves living like a local)
- Cuddly Animals
- Female-run businesses (ok, this one's a bonus)
That's why, when my sister Cali and I got to chatting with a woman from Clover Top Creamery at the farmers market a couple of weeks ago, I was ecstatic when she invited us to stop by the dairy and hang out with their goats!
Clover Top is a new female-run homestead goat dairy & creamery in Albemarle County, located just outside of Charlottesville. We decided to stop in on Saturday morning, though we didn't book a formal tour.
As soon as we drove up to the farm, we were met by the farm manager Sasha, and Xena, the Livestock Guardian.
Sasha gave us a quick tour of the property, pointing out the former horse barn that now houses baby goats, and their new Farm Store. Across the driveway is a small but immaculate milking station/dairy. Since we just stopped by and didn't make a formal tour reservation, we didn't go into the milking parlor, but by peaking in the windows one could tell how pristine it all is kept. Just past the barn, we arrived at the main attraction: the cutest goats I've ever seen.
I don't even have words to tell you how precious these goats were, so luckily I took a ton of photos. They were bottle fed as babies, so they'll run right up to you and suck on your fingers (or shirt) as you pet them. In addition to the 12 baby goats, Clover Top Creamery also has 45 adult goats of different breeds.
Visiting a local dairy might not be the most conventional thing to do while traveling, but by now you should know that I'm not a "conventional traveler". As an advocate for sustainable living, it was wonderful to see where much of the cheese that we consumed was being produced (full disclosure, I don't actually eat cheese, but my sister raved over their goat cheese so much that I was super into the idea). Supporting local businesses that provide sustainable food solutions while traveling is a win-win-win
- You're supporting local economy directly
- You're getting a better, fresher product
- You might get to pet goats
The next time you're trying to figure out what to do while traveling, whether to Charlottesville or elsewhere, why not stop at the local farmers market and talk up the vendors, or look into local farms and ask for a tour. You'll be glad you did!
Clover Top is a homestead farm, meaning their house is situated right there on the property, but it is open to the public for tours. Shopping for fresh goat cheese at their farm store is available on an honor system and is highly recommended (Try the Lemon Blueberry Basil, you won't be disappointed)