Meet the Cheesemaker’s Cow: Ona!

Meet the Cheesemaker’s Cow: Ona!

Ona is a red & white Holstein cow who lives in Michigan. Ona is the one who started her “Mom”, Lisa, on a cheesemaking journey.  2016 is Lisa’s third cheesemaking year. She makes cheese a couple times per week seasonally, mostly in the Fall and Winter. “My biggest cheesemaking challenge is finding time in my day to make it,” says Lisa. We bet there are at least a few other Art of Cheese cheesemakers who can relate to that!

Hispanico/Manchego (same recipe, different milks) and Cheddar are Lisa’s favorite cheeses to make, mainly because they are her favorite cheeses to eat. She likes them aged 6 months or longer. Lisa has an impressive list of other cheeses she makes, including quark, cream cheese, cottage cheese, colby, and monterey jack. Take a look at this beautiful Malbec infused cheese she made for her daughter. “It turned out so pretty, and it was pretty tasty, too!” All we can say is “Gorgeous!”


Lisa visited The Art of Cheese in Fall of 2015, when she attended her first (and only!) cheesemaking class – a daylong Intermediate Cheesemaking workshop at which she earned her Bronze Level Cheesemaker Certificate.

Lisa tells us the best cheese she ever made was her very first Monterey Jack. Her cheesemaking set up is pretty simple. “I use a 20 quart stainless steel pot, cheese thermometer, and my kitchen sink.” This fall she progressed to heating milk on the stove. Lisa’s favorite cheesemaking tool? “I absolutely LOVE my Sturdy Press ( ), and I use a beverage fridge to age my cheeses.”

Thanks for sharing, Lisa!

Submitted by Becca Heins

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