About Us

Cutting Curd & Making Whey

IN THE WILLAPA HILLS — Since 2008 Willapa Hills Cheese has been handcrafting natural artisan cheese on our historic farmstead in SW Washington. Willapa Hills Cheese is a licensed dairy processor partnering with two local family dairy farms. Our creamery produces sheep milk cheese six months of the year and cow milk and sheep/cow milk blend cheese year-round. WHERE NATURAL MEANS NATURAL — Willapa Hills sources only the highest quality natural ingredients for our products. Our milk is free of antibiotics and rBST/rBGH. A COMMITMENT TO QUALITY — Willapa Hills utilizes a comprehensive Food Safety Program that includes HACCP and third party auditing in concert with environmental and product testing. We are excited to share our family of aged and fresh cow and sheep milk cheeses. WELCOME TO THE WILLAPA HILLS!

  • The Happy Zone

    The sweet spot for % humidity needed to grow blue mold (and make blue cheese).

  • 2x the curd, 2x the joy

    Average % cheese yield from sheep milk - twice the yield of cow and goat milk!

  • the dearth of sheep dairies - explained

    Number of ewes needed to equal one cow's fluid milk production.

  • THE WEIGHT OF MILK

    The weight in pounds of a gallon of milk - Willapa Hills' cheese vat holds 5,000 lbs.

Meet Our Fabulous Aged Cheeses

Handcrafted, Natural, Unique - Some Things Are Just Better With Age
Lilly Pad
Lilly Pad
Washed Rind Cow Milk Hard Cheese
Aged for over five months, Lilly Pad is an American original inspired by classic European alpine style cheeses. Excellent alone, as an ingredient in your favorite recipe or melted into a luscious cheese sauce, Lilly Pad is a cheese that loves a celebration. Enjoying a wedge of Lilly Pad will connect you to your roots—even as it inspires you to see things anew!
Big Boy Blue
Big Boy Blue
Natural Rind Cow Milk Blue Cheese
Big Boy Blue is our first cheese to win a blue ribbon in competition. Fittingly, the label has always been adorned with an image of our two boys. Along with their sister (see Lilly Pad), they have been our inspiration. Raising kids on a farm, handcrafting the perfect blue cheese… you can see it, right? Give Big Boy Blue a try and we know you’ll understand. It’s the perfect Blue for both specialty retail and food service—just ask the boys.
Pluvius
Pluvius
Natural Rind Cow Milk Cheese
Willapa Hills’ Pluvius (the Greek god of rain) is named for a historic pass west of our farm that can get upwards of a 140 inches of rain a year. Experience for yourself this unique natural rind cheese that caused Culture Magazine to proclaim “Pluvius does the Greek gods proud!” Firm and slightly crumbly when it’s young, soft and creamy along the rind as it ages, with ever-deepening crème over time. Who says that five pounds of handcrafted goodness can’t reveal a bit of the divine?
Two-Faced Blue
Two-Faced Blue
Natural Rind Sheep/Cow Milk Cheese
Two-Faced Blue represents a beautiful (and delicious) joining of two milk sources: sheep and cow. Together they create a rich and luscious blue cheese that is both familiar and new. Our natural rind adds to the complexity of Two-Faced Blue as it ages. Over the years it has drawn praise in national cheese columns, food and lifestyle magazines and from personalities as unique as Two-Faced Blue itself. Give it a try and you’ll see that it’s a perfect fit for specialty retail and food service.
Ewe Old Cow
Ewe Old Cow
Washed Rind Sheep/Cow Milk Cheese
Stay tuned for more exciting details about Willapa Hills newest cheese goes into distribution in summer 2016!
Ewe Moon
Ewe Moon
Natural Rind Sheep Milk Blue Cheese
Willapa Hills rarest blue beauty of them all. Made in limited quantity and usually only available at our farm store.

CHEESE THAT LEAVES AN IMPRESSION

Natural Cream Cheese Spreads

Available in Seven Delicious Varieties Incuding Plain
Garlic Herb
Garlic Herb
Honey Chipotle
Honey Chipotle
Red Pepper
Red Pepper
6 oz. Cups for Retail
6 oz. Cups for Retail
All varieties of our natural cream cheese spreads – including plain – are available in six 6 oz. cups to a case.
Pickled pepper
Pickled pepper
Bacon Blu
Bacon Blu
Cranberry Blu
Cranberry Blu
Food Service Format
Food Service Format
All varieties of our natural cream cheese spreads – including plain – are available in a case of two 5 lb. bags for food service.

Make Willapa Hills Cheese part of your special occasion celebration!

More Than Meets the Eyes

Growing a Sustainable Family Farm in the Willapa Hills
Historic Farmstead
Historic Farmstead
In 2005 Willapa Hills Cheese found a home on a historic farmstead in SW Washington. Farmed by the Stannek family for three generations, the farm was home to the Doty Dairy in the 1920s. In subsequent years the farm raised cattle and a variety of grass and grain crops. Two of our barns are included in the Washington State Heritage Barn Register. The main barn houses our milk room and creamery.
A River Runs Through
A River Runs Through
The Chehalis River runs through the center of Willapa Hills Farm. Sometimes its presence is nearly invisible when the water is low and the weather calm. During the summer heat it provides respite for our family, staff and interns. During the winter it can add drama to seemingly endless grey days as it rises quickly in response to heavy precipitation coming in from the Pacific Ocean. No matter the season, the ebb and flow of the river has a profound impact on our sense of place in the Willapa Hills.
Simple & Natural
Simple & Natural
Willapa Hills Cheese is committed to simple and natural ingredients in our Cheese. Our products meet the requirements of local, regional and national natural food stores, all of whom have very clear standards for approving products labeled “natural”. At the most basic level, natural means that our cheese and dairy products are free of artificial colors, preservatives, flavors, sweeteners and hydrogenated fats. Simple and natural.
Sustainability
Sustainability
Willapa Hills has made a long-term commitment to sustainability. While far from being a fully sustainable operation, we have made concrete steps toward our goal. Sustainable Agriculture looks at three primary objectives: 1) Economic Sustainability, 2) Social Sustainability and 3) Environmental Sustainability. Ongoing initiatives include natural hay production, responsible nutrient management and participation in the Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program.
Doty, Washington
Doty, Washington
Prior to 1890 a farming community existed in the valley, but the area thrived when C.A. Doty built one of the largest lumber mills in the County. In 1915 the Puget Sound & Willapa Harbor railroad was built. By 1916 the population had risen to 1,000 and included schools and a YMCA. In 1929 the mill closed and the population dropped. The current population of Doty is estimated at less than 220. Visit the Doty store to see some pictures of Doty’s glory days.
Sheep Milk
Sheep Milk
Willapa Hills’ sheep milk comes from a flock of dairy ewes made up of high percentage East Friesian and Lacaune cross ewes. East Friesian sheep are known the world over for their high milk production and Lacaune sheep are known for their high milk fat. East Friesian and Lacaune ewes were crossed with the goal of capturing the best characteristics of each breed – high production and high butterfat respectively.
Farm Store
Farm Store
Open daily, our farm store offers a fabulous selection of Willapa Hills fresh and aged cheeses, as well as limited quantities of non-homogenized whole milk and farm fresh eggs (while supplies last – call ahead to reserve). We also stock a collection of seasonally available complimentary items for your enjoyment. The farm store is open 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM seven days a week. Feel free to call ahead if you have questions @ 360.291.EWES.
Farm Visits & Immersions
Farm Visits & Immersions
Willapa Hills Cheese offers a variety of Farm Visit & Immersion Experiences for groups from 3 to 30+. Each Immersion is customized to meet the needs of the group. Willapa Hills has hosted numerous groups from companies, schools and community organizations. There is generally no charge for existing customers. For outside groups there is a nominal fee based on the time frame, the level of staff or resources utilized and the number pf participants.

Willapa Hills Cheese is a proud member of The American Cheese Society

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