When Beehive Cheese strides into the party, heads turn. Holstering their phones, guests turn to their friends.
This is not the cheese you grew up on—it’s in a league of its own. Humble cheddar elevated to artisanal greatness. The flavor transports you and spirited conversations begin.
Our cheese brings people together and sharing it freely has been linked to an increase in the quality and quantity of friendships—that’s pretty much a fact.
How did Beehive Cheese become the talk of your table, though? For both Tim and Pat, a value of community runs deep. They chose to name their cheese company after the Beehive since Utah is the Beehive State. The beehive symbolizes the industry and self-reliance it takes to make our desert bloom. Believe it or not, cheese lets us build connections with new friends every day.
This little weird slice of heaven in the high desert is home to the most industrious people who support and lift each other up. When you live in a desert, it’s a way of life and your heritage. Our ingredients are local, and we enthusiastically give back to our community through philanthropy.
In 2005, Tim Welsh (right) had a vision of opening a creamery in the mountains of Utah. He shared that lofty goal with the most passionate, hard-working, positive person he knew—his brother-in-law, Pat Ford (left). Their shared history of entrepreneurship and deep mutual trust is bedrock to Beehive’s culture of trust, community, and ingenuity.
So how did the creation of award winning, new world cheese derive from a software guy and a real estate salesman? Tim Welsh didn’t set out to create a whole new segment in the cheese industry. With the collapse of the dotcom economy, Tim found himself with a desire to contribute something real and tangible to the foodie community. This hunger grew to become Beehive Cheese.
Pat and Tim had 8 days of cheesemaking experience between them when they filled their vat for the first time. The friends sought help from Western Dairy Center, a leading cheese research institution of the western U.S. The cheese researchers adopted Beehive as their artisanal interns and mentored the novice cheesemakers with their expertise in cheese crafting.
After learning how to make their base cheese, Promontory, the partners realized pretty quickly that you can’t make great cheese without the best milk. They chose to partner with Wadeland South, a fourth-generation family creamery. The Wade family cares for a healthy and thriving herd of Holstein and Jersey cows. The high butter fat of their milk gives Beehive Cheeses a consistent, rich quality.
You can’t make an omelet without breaking a few eggs, and sometimes you need to rewrite the cheesemaking rules to find greatness.
From a humble seed, the Beehive Cheese movement began taking root. The cheesemakers got crazy and—not knowing what they couldn’t do—invented a new way of making cheese. Tim had some coffee roasted by his brother in Colorado lying around. In a moment of flavor insight, he combined the rich, roasty coffee with bright lavender for an external rub on the cheese. And Barely Buzzed was born!
The brothers-in-law took their new creation to the national American Cheese Society competition and turned heads. In its first year of creation, Barely Buzzed pulled ahead in its category and won Best Flavored Cheddar in America. Then not wanting to let its fans down, Barely Buzzed took first place another four times in the years to come.
This commitment and a willingness to try new things catapulted the cheesemakers to the national spotlight. Beehive continues to be among the nation’s leading creameries producing award-winning cheeses like our honey, salt-rubbed Seahive, or Red Butte Hatch Chile.
Our tiny creamery at the mouth of the Weber Canyon continues to grow. Pat and Tim have expanded their trust and brought on the next generation of cheesemakers and staff to continue the vision, but still with the commitment to making friends through their craft every day.