All my sentiments about real beef vs. manufactured junk beef are unsurprisingly echoed in my experiences with milk from pastured cows and the mysterious blue-grey non-fat beverage I find in the convenient store down the street. The former has a creamy lingering taste, even when thoroughly skimmed, and the latter, well, falls flat and thin on the tongue leaving nothing but wetness.
But it is the local yogurts that have thoroughly seduced me. And then there is the cheeses...
As an avid vino gulper, I find myself wondering if pasture-fed milk has terroir? If the grass the cow eats grows on soil which is say, clay or gravel, irrigated or parched, does it change the flavor of the milk? Does the milk from a cow in a warm climate differ from a cow in bitter temps? (No jokes about ice cream, please.)
Similarly, is there an art to cow milking? If a farmer is a late riser do you get a different flavor? Do skimming process affect the flavor? How about bottle type?
To begin answering these questions, I will begin a great (er, modest) Milk Off next week. Milk and yogurt from different farms, from cows eating different grasses, will face off in my mouth. I can’t wait.