The Yogurt Project: Old Chatham Sheep's Milk Maple | Food News | Seven Days | Vermont's Independent Voice

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The Yogurt Project: Old Chatham Sheep's Milk Maple 

This is my fifth yogurt trial so far...if you've read any of theothers, you can skip right down to the "taste test" portion. If not,I've reprinted my intro below:

What's the deal with little cups of yogurt? Just a few years ago,fermented-dairy eaters had a choice between Dannon and Columbo.Remember Columbo? I didn't...I had to ask my coworker to help me comeup with the name of "that other major yogurt company when we weregrowing up."

Now, I see customers standing dumbstruck before the yogurt shelf,not knowing whether to reach for full-fat sheeps' milk, low-fat cows'milk or even a soy.  So, I figure, it's time for a massiveyogurt taste test. You ready?

If I were a purist I would taste only plain yogurt, but this is mygame, and I don't wanna. So I'm going to do the best I can comparingdifferent brands by eating their most enticing flavors.

Old Chatham Sheepherding Company: Maple

More than $2

Packaging: Pretty simple. The background is mainly green, and there's a, well, maple colored stripe around the bottom. There's also a simple drawing of a black sheep, which is cute and slightly creepy at the same time. Why creepy? The sheep's eyes kind of look like they're glowing, which gives it the appearance of an evil zombie sheep.
    On the back there's a good amount of information about the farm's yogurt-making practices. They use all-natural ingredients and manage the farm organically, for example. There's also a note about the fact that sheep's milk is easier to digest than cow's milk.

Nutrition Info: 6 oz. serving. 160 calories. 12% fat (DV). 0 g. fiber (DV). 11 g. sugar. 8 g. protein. 6% vitamin A (DV). 3% vitamin C (DV). 29% calcium (DV). 3% iron (DV).

Active Cultures: L. bulgaricus, S. thermophilus, L. acidophilus, Bifidus.

Appearance: Pretty white, with some whey off (that means there's liquid hanging around atop the yogurt). Around the edge there are some bubbly markings.

A pleasant "ferment-y" smell.

Mouthfeel: Of the non, non-fat yogurts I've tried, this is the lightest. It has a lovely (yet fleeting) silky mouthfeel. At the bottom of the container the texture became inconsistent. I stirred it up, but there were a few small blobs.

Taste: It may sound strange, but the first word that comes to mind is "effervescent." Yes, I know that's a touch descriptor, but what I mean is that it is tangy in the same way that carbonated beverages are tangy. It's slightly sour without being at all pucker-y. The maple flavor isn't very strong.

Notes: I appreciate the nutritional profile of this yogurt: It's neither super-decadent nor non- or low-fat. And it doesn't have a lot of sugar. And for those who can't tolerate cow's milk, this could be a great option. Overall,
I like it, I'd buy it again, but I won't lust after it.

*Picture from the Old Chatham website


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Suzanne Podhaizer

Suzanne Podhaizer

Former contributor Suzanne Podhaizer is an award-winning food writer (and the first Seven Days food editor) as well as a chef, farmer, and food-systems consultant. She has given talks at the Stone Barns Center for Agriculture's "Poultry School" and its flagship "Young Farmers' Conference." She can slaughter a... more


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