Iztueta Creamery – Lazkao, País Vasco

IztuetaLogo

 

While I was back in TPT Bakery, Alazne kindly offered to take Susy and I to visit the local creamery located in the grassy green hills just 10 minutes outside of Beasain. Iztueta is the primary supplier of artisanal dairy for TPT Bakery, Beasain, and other surrounding small towns and villages.

IztuetaLandscape

 

It was a rather dreary day full of rain clouds, but the gloom could not cover the beautiful landscape and made it look more mystique with the clouds swirling around the mountains and the fog settling around the pastures.

IztuetaHouse

 

The creamery was located on the top of a green hillside; there was a huge mansion-like ranch house where the Iztueta family lived for many generations (would love a place like that), and a huge indoor farm where all the cows were kept when it was raining.

IztuetaAdults

 

The first thing I noticed about the farmhouse was that it DID NOT SMELL. It in fact, smelled like fresh grass, hay, and oats. It was definitely a far cry from the usual smelly cow feces that just slaps you across the face when passing by those disgusting concentrated cow feed lots in the U.S..

IztuetaMature

 

The cows were all happily grazing away, the ones nearest to us took noticed and started to stare. They were very curious, most of the cows came over to me to when I approached them so I could give them a good scratch on the head! The weirdest thing was though, was when I was petting one juvenile cow it licked me with it’s huge tongue, and that was the weirdest feeling ever; kinda like extremely coarse gravel just scraping against your skin.

IztuetaKids2

 

The farmers at Iztueta are definitely doing it right here, the cows seem to love people.

IztuetaVeal

 

All the cows are organized by age groups so they get the proper attention, feed, and care taking that they need respective to their age. Here are the baby cows (veal). So cute, innocent, and a bit shy. Kinda makes me never to want to eat veal ever again…it’s not that tasty anyways.

IztuetaFeedDog

 

As with all farms all around the world, they got tons of ranch dogs running all over the place, all very curious and extremely friendly. The feed shown above consists of barley, hay, oats, and wheats. It’s all organic and top quality, ensuring a top shelf end product. It should also be noted that the maximum amount of cows that Iztueta has at their creamery is 40. This is the maximum number of cows that the land can sustain so the environment does not suffer from overgrazing. The pens are also kept extremely clean by a giant Roomba that collects all the cow pies in the pens, and they are washed daily. No wonder there is no smell!

IztuetaMilkingRoom

Next we were taken into the milking room. The farmers only milk the cows that are pregnant (only pregnant cows produce milk naturally, most of the mass produced stuff is hormone induced milk). The cows willingly walk into the pen to get milked by these high powered milking machines.

IztuetaPasturization

Once milked, the milk is transferred to the immaculately clean pasteurization room where the milk is filtered, pasteurized, and packaged for delivery!

IztuetaClandestineCream

Iztueta also boasts a very special “Clandestine” Cream that is NOT available to the general public since its sale is prohibited by food regulation laws. However, Alazne has the inside scoop and happened to acquire a 1.5L bottle of this unpasteurized cream. This cream was something else; incredibly grassy, so thick you gotta squeeze it out of the bottle, and a slightly gamey farmhouse taste. I simply whipped some up with sugar and macerated it with strawberries. Holy shit that was soo good. Later Susy and I made a Basque Clam Chowder with it that was also amazing in itself (I’ll provide a recipe for that later).

IztuetaWell

I know I should rep Californian cows, but the happiest cows I’ve seen come from Iztueta Creamery!

Iztueta Creamery

20210 Lazkao (Gipuzkoa), País Vasco, Spain

Phone: 606 – 435 – 022

info@iztuetaesnea.com

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~ by Clifton Su on March 6, 2013.

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