The Stonehouse is the old toll house on the wagon trail that crossed the Klein Rivier where today stands a wooden bridge. The house dates back to 1772. Today the cottage up in the mountains is a rustic breakaway for people wanting a quiet time, walking in the mountains, braaing, canoeing, cycling, or swimming in the river.
The farm has a dairy and will now add a veal production unit and pig unit to drink up all the whey that will come out of the factory. The farm has a history of dairy, vegitables, onions and was known as TemmersTuin. There are rumours that boxes of gold stolen off the sinking Birkenhead were thrown into the See Koei Gat (deep hippo pools on the Klein River). Some day we will find it.
Rotterdam Estates and Stonehouse milk over 500 jersey cows on two separate farms. These magnificent dairy animals are built to endure the elements of the Southern Cape. Our ladies are the sweetest animals to work with and rarely complain. We use mainly imported semen on our cows and raise most of our heifers. Every now and again we must use the bull to cover someone struggling to get pregnant.
Our one herd is at Buffeljagsrivier near Swellendam while the other is on the farm Stonehouse near Stanford. All together there must be close to 1000 animals on the farms.
Our primary goal is to produce magnificant white mould cheeses. Brie and Camembert, plain and with sutle flavours added such as black pepper and green fig. our guide will be to try and keep all our products as natural as possible and listen to the consumer. We will also make yogurts trying to keep away from sugar and give a health product to drink and snack on throughout the day. Clotted cream that will go with all jams and scones is one of my favourites. We will also slowly start producing hard cheeses.
My mothers favorite Swiss cheese is a Tete de Moine and strangely enough our cheese maker has chosen this as one of his favourites. There are restrictions on the names that one can use so we will call ours the "tears of the moon" to go along with the natural theme. Some of our hard cheeses will carry the brand of Rotterdam our family farm from 1794 in Swellendam