Tour the Caves
Due to Federal regulations we do not have tours of the facility available to the public, however you can take our virtual tour or visit our retail cheese shop: The Cheese Cave 318 Central Ave N. Faribault, MN 55021
To view a short film of cheese cave exploration, please click here: http://vimeo.com/36248940
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------Another, slightly longer video clip here:
About The Caves: Legend holds that the first blue cheese was born in the natural caves of France where ideal humidity and temperature conditions allowed native blue green molds to flourish. That tradition lives on at Caves of Faribault®, on the site where America's first blue cheese was made, and where every hand made batch of award winning AmaBlu® and St. Pete’s Select™ blue cheese is aged in sandstone caves carved from the river bluffs. Faribault, MN is on nearly the same line of latitude as Roquefort, France. The atmosphere within our caves is ideal for the curing and aging of blue cheese.
The formation of St. Peter Sandstone goes back to the last glacial age. St. Peter Sandstone is the beach sand deposit from the glacier’s retreat. Found only in Minnesota, Iowa, Illinois and northern Missouri, this sandstone is geologically rare. It is uniquely qualified for aging cheese and lagering beer. The caves began serving this purpose in 1854 when Gottfried and Ernst Fleckenstein used the caves to brew and age their beer made at Fleckenstein Brewing Co. They had to close down that operation due to The Prohibition of Alcohol beginning imposed in the year 1919 and lasting until 1933.
In December 1936, Mr. Felix Frederiksen purchased the caves and set up shop for the first blue cheese to be made in the United States. He named his company Treasure Cave, Inc.
Today, Caves of Faribault® is the only U.S. cheese maker still curing and aging blue cheese exclusively in caves. This traditional process allows the AmaBlu® blue and gorgonzola and St. Pete’s Select™ blue cheeses to distinguish themselves with a complex, complicated yet delightfully intimate flavor.
The caves amass nearly an acre's-worth of land within the sandstone bluff. Over time, sections have been carved to form a network of twelve caves. The St. Peter Sandstone is self-supporting to gothic arches, enable the cave ceilings to hold twenty-two feet in height. You don't have to be short in stature to work in these caves.
Our dedicated employees realize you can’t rush premium blue cheese; we cave age our cheeses well beyond industry standards to achieve their full flavor potential. The caves allow us to work in tandem with nature to create truly legendary cheeses.