I managed to do a little shopping Saturday amid the scrum clamoring for Paul Kahan’s bouillabaisse, Troy Graves’s braised pork shoulder, Sarah Stegner’s lardy Three Sisters black beans, and Gary Wiviott’s barbecue at the Green City Market. There I was finishing off a cup of Rick Bayless’s pozole when an urchin tugged at my sleeve and offered a taste of milk. Holy cow, was it good — icy cold, rich, and creamy. I laid down six bucks for a quart, three of which were a deposit on the glass bottle, which Nick Kirch of Blue Marble Family Farm in Barneveld, Wisconsin, said keeps it best at its properly frigid temperature.
Kirch makes milk (and cream and buttermilk and yogurt) from a single herd of 75 BGH-free cows in the Driftless region west of Madison (where lots of good dairy comes from). He pasteurizes at low heat, doesn’t homogenize, and bottles the results himself on the premises, selling direct–even delivering–to the consumer. I opened my quart this morning and couldn’t help taking a nip of thick buttery cream that had risen to the top.