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A few weeks ago, our Executive Chef walked into my office and said, “I have a surprise for you,” and he plopped down a few cartons of what looked like ice cream, and a bunch of spoons. What I tasted, however, was most definitely NOT ice cream, but instead it was this creamy, rich, delicious, decadent, flavorful, satisfying cold gelato – from buffalo milk –  that is, water buffalo! I was hooked … and intrigued!

So, this past Thursday, chef set up a field trip for all our staff to tour the DiBufala Dairy … located at what used to be the St. Anthony’s Rehabilitation Center, just down the road in Valley Ford. It is there, on this beautiful piece of property with state of the art equipment, that owner, Andrew Zlot, and his team make this creamy concoction that will, for sure, be the next foodie desire!

Our crew arrived around 10 a.m. and were met by Andrew, Curtis and Melissa who graciously took a large chunk out of their very busy and structured day to give our staff a grand tour of the herd, the milking facilities, and the creamery. We were introduced  to the newest members of the herd who arrived recently from the midwest and the calves (omg – could they be any cuter!) who were born just a few week and/or months ago. As you can see from the photos, we all got the chance to be very up close and personal with these amazing gentle giants!

One can easily and immediately sense that Andrew absolutely loves what he does; we all listened with rapt attention as he spoke to us about the entire operation with enthusiasm and passion.

Later we enjoyed a perfectly cooked buffalo burger with all the fixings and of course, some of that mouth-watering, delicious gelato. My personal favorite right now: Salted Caramel – yummmmm!

While the DiBufala Dairy Gelato is making its way into restaurants in Marin County, one of the best spots to enjoy it is, of course, bay side at Nick’s Cove.

Gelato is not all Andrew has up his sleeve: he will soon be turning his passion for cheese making towards another fan-favorite: the elusive Mozzarella! I cannot wait to taste that (and serve it at the restaurant)!

What a treat for all of us at Nick’s Cove to get a first-hand, up-close tour with Andrew, his team and those beautiful animals!

A huge, heartfelt thank you to DiBufala Dairy!


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About Dena Grunt

"We need women who are so strong they can be gentle, so educated they can be humble, so fierce they can be compassionate, so passionate they can be rational, and so disciplined they can be free." - Kavita Ramdas Dena is the author or Table with a View: the History and Recipes of Nick's Cove" and founder of Destination HR Consulting. She lives in Petaluma.

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