A Visit with Vail's First Artisanal Cheesemaker

The Valley's first creamery was born in a basement.

By John Lehndorff November 22, 2016 Published in the Holiday 2016/2017 issue of Vail-Beaver Creek Magazine

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Ann Kurronen's Timberline cream cheese laced with currants, walnuts, basil, and garlic remains a top seller for her quickly expanding AnnaVail artisanal cheese brand.

Most Eagle residents have washers, snowshoes, storage bins, and Christmas decorations piled in their basements. But not Ann Kurronen.

The proprietor of AnnaVail Cheese doesn’t have room for any of that stuff now that she has a 1,500-square-foot licensed cheese making and aging facility, the only one of its kind in Eagle County, which until recently was an artisan cheese desert.

It’s the logical next step up from the Vail Farmers’ Market stall where, for the past two years, she’s been selling—and selling out of—her signature Timberline cream cheese laced with currants, walnuts, basil, and garlic. With room to grow, the AnnaVail lineup includes Tomme de Vail (a semi-soft sheep’s milk cheese with a nutty, buttery flavor), and new a chèvre-like cheese aged in grape leaves marinated in wine or bourbon.

“I really like the flavor, it’s so rich and creamy,” gushes the valley’s sole cheesemonger. “I’m so excited to finally be making all these cheeses.”

As are we all. 

AnnaVail Cheese, 970-390-9988, 1182 Hernage Creek Road, Eagle Ranch, Colorado.


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