On our first outing to the Rock Center Greenmarket this year, Blondie and happened upon the Valley Shepherd Creamery stand. Way at the bottom of their extensive daily special signage I noticed amongst the cave aged sheep and cow's milk cheese there was gelato for $3 a cup. $3 gelato? Interesting. Very interesting...
The folks from Valley Shepherd Creamery are a regular vendors from the NYC greenmarket scene with a presence at multiple markets throughout the city. This summer they are at the Rock Center market on Wednesdays and Fridays, though it seems like they only bring the gelato on Fridays. In a moment of weakness, Blondie and I passed up the raspberry and tiramisu gelato that first Friday. So I had to make up for it last week and on my lunch I picked up a serving of Sabayon gelato to share with a coworker for lunch.
Sabayon is the French cousin of the Italian dessert Zabaglione. It's a light custard, traditionally made with egg yolks, sugar, and sweet wine and whipped up so it's super airy. The gelato itself was creamy and lightly fruity. The sheep milk flavor wasn't strong at all--had I not read the label I wouldn't have known it was made in part with sheep's milk. Overall, it was a bit too sweet for me, but 1) that's partially the nature of Sabayon itself, and 2) as much as a I like dessert, I don't have a high tolerance for stuff that's really sweet, so if you have a big sweet tooth you might not have a problem with the sweet factor here. The other flavor last Friday was a hazelnut, which I would have loved to have tried, but can't because of my nut allergy. At $3 for a nice little cup of gelato, it's a pleasant Friday treat. I'd like to go back and try some of their other flavors and pick up some cheese.
Quickly perusing Valley Shepherd's website I think I'm in love. In addition to cheese tours, they have cheese making classes for $150 which include a tour, cheese tasting, luncheon on the farm's porch and your own cheese wheel. A 1Kg cheese wheel! Blondie, get the car ready, we're taking a field trip.