The milk used to make the ice cream at Prigel Family Creamery in Glen Arm doesn't have far to travel. In fact, the dairy cows, pictured, producing the milk are visible in the nearby pastures, grazing on grass and hay.
The doe-eyed animals are used to people's attention and stop their munching long enough to check out nosy visitors like me on this chilly day. The Jersey cows (there are some Holsteins) are part of Bellevale Farm, owned by Bobby Prigel, the fourth generation to farm the Baltimore County property, now certified organic.
The two-year-old creamery was built to help support the farm, he says. In addition to ice cream, it also sells various cuts of meats from the farm's Berkshire/Yorkshire pigs, pictured; soaps made from the cows' milk; and beautiful wood bowls crafted by Bobby's father.
Another product will be introduced soon—yogurt, also made from the farm's fresh milk. Health Department approval of the product is expected any day. I had an opportunity to sample the maple and honey yogurts. They were rich, creamy, and delicious.
Eventually, Bobby, who runs the farm with family members, hopes to make butter and cheese, too.
Chef/owner Winston Blick of Clementine in Hamilton was at the Creamery today to pick up Prigel milk for his restaurant and wooden cheese boards specially made by Bobby Sr. for his charcuterie.
He is a proponent of humanely raised animals. "We have a seven-year-old," he says, referring to his son Zeke with wife/restaurant co-owner Kristin Dadant. "We're interested in where our food comes from."
He sources as many local products as he can at his two restaurants (the other Clementine is at the Creative Alliance in Highlandtown) and the Green Onion Market in Hamilton.
"They're happy cows," he says, as the curious animals approach him in the field. "The milk tastes better."
Photos by me