Artisanal, Farmstead Cheeses

Cheese-Maker: Fernando Chavez-Sandoval

Award-Winning Cheese-Maker

Cheese Facility Manager

Fernando cheesemaker at Gold Creek Farms

Our Cheese-maker, Fernando Chavez-Sandoval, is an excellent gourmet chef. He brings his skills as a chef to his cheese-making craft and loves to play with new recipes. We can’t wait to see what he is going to come up with next!

Fernando developed a love for cooking at a very young age as a means to bring his family closer together. As he grew into adulthood, he quickly realized he wanted a career in the food industry. With dedication and hard work, he began his career in the food industry as a dishwasher at the Gateway Grill in Kamas, Utah. He wanted to learn everything he could about the restaurant industry and quickly worked his way up to Line Cook, Sous Chef, Head Chef, and eventually Executive Chef. Over the next decade, he had the opportunity to work with some of the finest restaurants and catering companies in the Deer Valley and Park City areas as well as cooked for presidents, political figures, celebrities, business professionals, sports figures, and so many other incredible people he feels grateful to know.

In 2009, Alan and Debbie Gold approached Fernando and asked him if he would like to help create a high-quality, artisan cheese in the midst of the mass-producing cheese industry. It was their goal from the very beginning to place quality over quantity, and make the best and most delicious cheese they could.

Fernando1In his first three years of cheese-making, Fernando was able to achieve the most prestigious award of First in Class at the World Champion Cheese Competition as well as multiple awards from the American Cheese Society and the United States Champion Cheese Competition.

In 2012, his smoked cheddar won Best in Class and his smoked parmesan won Second in Class at the World Championship Cheese Competition! As Fernando was presented with his gold award, the judge said to him,

“I don’t know how you did it, son, but in the time I’ve been judging this event, I have never seen or tasted a cheese like this!”

In 2011, Fernando’s wife, Ashley, also joined the Gold Creek Farms team. Like Fernando, Ashley had previously spent years working in both the restaurant as well as travel industries. She now works with Debbie ensuring our vendors are paid and customers are happy. It is her priority to ensure all our orders are packed with the best of care and makes all our beauty products with only quality ingredients.

Ashley has also helped Fernando develop some of our most popular cheese flavors, and one of their most fun memories is making heart-shaped blue cheese together on Valentine’s Day. Fernando and Ashley have three kids who love visiting the calves and cows and have never once left the farm without sampling curds. Believe it or not, the spicy jalapeño curds are a favorite!

Both Ashley and Fernando are proud to work with Debbie and Alan and look forward to many more years of creating quality and wholesome products at the farm that we can share with others. From our family to yours, we hope you enjoy!