ABOUT Merryl Winstein

I am Merryl Winstein, and for 22 years I raised dairy goats and made cheese in suburban St. Louis, Missouri, USA.

I started loving cheese as a teenager when I traveled alone to Denmark to visit my penpal and live with her family. There I ate phenomenal cheeses that weren’t available here at home. Those flavors inspired a lifelong journey of learning and then teaching the time-honored, traditional, and professional methods for making fabulous tasting cheese.  

I’ve taught a few thousand people of all ages, how to make delicious, authentic, artisan cheese of all types, at home or in the cheese making plant. Whether you've never made cheese before, or your cheese needs improvement, it's easy to learn the accurate yet simple techniques that will empower you to make wonderful cheese successfully, whether at home or in the plant.

YOU CAN MAKE DELICIOUS CHEESE, if you follow the correct instructions (which I will teach you).  Sorry, but you cannot make very good tasting cheese if you follow the incorrect instructions you will find on the internet or in most popular cheesemaking books.

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I started learning to make cheese when I got goats in 1993.  For a long time the cheese didn't turn out so well, in fact it was so bad nobody would eat it, including me.  The few books I found were quite confusing, and a lot of the current books are still confusing (however, my own book will make things clear and should be finished soon).  Also, I sometimes used pasteurized supermarket milk, as advised in many publications, and that simply won't work.  But at the time I didn't know why. (More, scroll down)

Some years ago, when I started taking professional cheesemaking classes in New England and elsewhere (listed below), I quickly saw what to do, and I returned every six months for additional 3-day workshops with visiting foreign experts.  I took eight 3-5 days workshops at the Vermont Institute for Artisan Cheese and earned a "Master Cheesemaking Certificate." That's a very flattering title for someone who really isn't a master.

VIAC stopped teaching in April 2013 because an employee was embezzling.  Luckily, I got all the information I could, which I pass on to my learners.  Those classes opened a whole new world to me, being able to make great tasting cheese of every kind, which stores well and turns out the way I want.  And I love being able to show other people just how to do it.

To me, making cheese is simple.  I view the process as the same thing all the time, but with different variations for different cheeses.  In my classes, I make a wide array of methods rapidly understandable to anyone, whether they have absolutely no knowledge of cheesemaking or of science, or whether they are chefs, microbiologists, farmers, homemakers, foodies, brewers or simply curious.  My intention is for people to go home from my classes ready to make all their favorites - and they do. 

Listen to  me in person on my recent interview at KDHX.org, the Earthworms Show with Jean Ponzi. (KDHX_FM 88.1, St. Louis, MO,Nov 24, 2017).

Participants can call me with their cheesemaking questions.  It's far easier to make delicious cheese, correctly, than to experiment with incorrect methods which will never work.  I feel deeply honored to be able to spread the age-old craft of expert cheesemaking to so many other people.



Some of the cheesemaking notions people have are truly absurd, but of course, who would know? Even now the information can be scarce and hard to find for most people. Misinformation printed in books, plagiarized, and then repeated over and over on the internet adds to the confusion. I took years to figure out what to do, but you don't have to waste all that time searching, because I will teach you all I can.

I have made just about all the mistakes that can be made, in the 22 years I have owned dairy goats, and more years of cheesemaking, so I know what you are up against.

Of course you will be able to make good, tasty cheese once you see and get your hands into the correct cheesemaking methods and get your questions answered at my cheese making classes.

Here I’ve listed my formal cheesemaking training. I have learned so much from my generous cheesemaking teachers.

Feb 2017 Danish Cheeses with Arne Fokdal, www.afdairy.com
Smear ripening
Cultured Danish Butter

July 2014 Danish Cheeses with Arne Fokdal, www.afdairy.com
Danbo, Havarti, Maribo 
Touring Danish artisan cheesemaking plants

Summer 2012 with Peter Dixon 
Affinage (Ripening), and touring Vermont cheese plants

April 2012 Vermont Institute for Artisan Cheese (VIAC)
Blue Cheeses, Affinage, Cheese Plant Construction

September 2011 (VIAC)
Spanish Cheese, Manchego, 
with Ric Canut

April 2011 (VIAC)
French Blue Cheeses

Fall 2010 (VIAC)
French Alpine Cheeses, Comte, Abondance, and washed rind cheeses

Fall 2010 with Jim Wallace 
Alpine Cheeses, Beaufort, Fontina

March 2010 (VIAC)
Washed Rind Cheeses 
with Gianna Ferguson & Tim Cogan from Ireland

2009 Fall, (VIAC)
3 weeks of all-day classes, earned "Master Cheesemaking" certificate
classes included

Italian and Mediterranean Cheesemaking 
Scamorza, Mozzarella, Kefalotyri, Manouri
Essential Principles & Practices 
Quality and Chemistry of Milk
Cheese Chemistry Short Course 
Starter Cultures Hygiene & Food Safety 
Affinage Behind the Scenes 
Basic Sensory Evaluation

June 2009 with Jim Wallace 
Traditional Cheddar, Camembert, & Vacho Toscano

PHOTO: This day-old Cheddar was as yellow as the banana, because the cows were eating lots of fresh, green, springtime grass. More explanation in my book, SUCCESSFUL CHEESEMAKING™.

Merryl Winstein, St. Louis MO Cheese Making Classes