What do Chef’s Do On Their Day Off? Visit a Goat Farm!

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Happy Lady (The original image is no longer available, please contact KCRW if you need access to the original image.)

Visit their ingredients of course!  Monday a group of about 40 of us trekked out the 60 fwy to Ontario to meet Dan Drake and his lovely bevy of ladies and gentlemen at Drake’s Goat Farm.  Dan currently sells to restaurants through LA Specialty.  Jen from LA Speciality organized the visit for us.

Starting in June Drake will be at the Sunday Santa Monica Market.  Currently they are in several OC Markets:  Tustin, Chino Hills, Costa Mesa, Orange, Laguna Hills, Rancho St. Margarita, Huntington Beach, Irvine, Temenula, Murrieta, Laguna Niguel.
In the meantime you can order their cheese online. You can buy a goat for yourself there too if you have a mountainside that needs to be cleared.

Dan, a vet,  is a self professed Goat Addict.  The cheese business is a delicious way for the herd to pay its way as Dan keeps collecting more and more of the adorably quirky animals.  Dan’s family settled in

foto credit: Leslie Balla (The original image is no longer available, please contact KCRW if you need access to the original image.)

Utah in the 1880s and created a homestead which is now considered a “Centennial Farm”.  There is a chance the farm will be lost to development and Dan has started shipping the goats from the family farm in Utah to his place in Ontario.

Dan first came to California to attend veterinary school at UC Davis.  When he graduated he ended up in the Ontario area doctoring to the large number of dairy cows in the area.  When the opportunity came to rent a defunct Goat Dairy he jumped at the chance.  The animals are well loved which shows up in the quality of the cheese.  Currently the Dairy produces fresh soft Chevre from “A” quality milk.

The cheese is absolutely delicious, of very high quality and has a clean, fresh, not too goaty taste. Drake’s specializes in flavored spreadable chevre.  I fell in love with the Jalapeno cheese for it’s assertive, fresh spiciness.  I think the Apricot-Honey Cheese would be perfect in a cannoli or as the base for a fruit tart and the plain, soft, natural cheese is lovely on it’s own.  (I ate it stuffed inside a glazed donut.  YUM!)  Keep reading to see pictures…