Evergreen Lane Farm & Creamery

Visit this 40-acre farm and cheese-making operation in Fennville, Michigan, where playful La Mancha goats graze and play. 

Goats at Evergreen Lane Farm & Creamery in Fennville, Michigan (photo courtesy of Evergreen Lane Farm & Creamery)

It’s not every day — or any day for that matter — that a goat wanders into the living room of your new home, but that’s what happened to Cathy and Tom Halinski when they first moved to a 40-acre farm near Fennville, a picturesque town in southwest Michigan. 

Unable to find the owner and knowing goats are herd animals that need companionship, the couple acquired a pal for their goat. Soon they realized they had a female goat who needed to be milked. For Cathy, the solution was easy; start making artisan goat cheeses. 

Evergreen Lane Farm & Creamery is now part of a food-centric region replete with wineries, breweries, orchards and farms. The Halinskis’ cheeses are available at local restaurants and stores as well as at the shop on the farm for travelers to take home. But the destination is by nature a goat-centered experience. 

The herd has grown, and there are now nine La Mancha goats. The female goats are all wily, loving and kid-friendly. The animals each have distinct personalities and a need for attention. At various times, Evergreen Lane Farm & Creamery offers goat tours, which consist of a walk through the apple orchards with the goats scrambling along. It’s a laid-back experience, too, as goats love nothing more than munching on goodies along the way like brambles, grass, blossoms and bushes. 

The Halinskis don’t milk their own goats anymore, instead sourcing the milk for cheese from a local farm. They also purchase pasture-grazed Jersey cows’ milk from the family-owned Moo-nique Dairy in Vandalia, Michigan. 

The goat cheese varieties made on-site span several flavors of chevre, including a chocolate truffle variety. It is not a regularly offered flavor due to the laborious production process, so if you can get it when you visit, be sure to do so. Also be sure to try the creamery’s camembert-style LaMancha MOO. 1824 66th St., Fennville, Michigan 49408, 269/686-6474, evergreenlanefarm.com