Check our Culture Library, or you can even use our facebook to locate local cultures. Additionally, GEM is excellent, Cultures for Health has a thorough inventory, and TempehStarter.com is our favorite source.
Excellent “links” for basic sausage making information: The Marianski’s are the most thorough resource with very good base recipes. For another great tutorial for self-teaching there’s Sausage Mania, who have a neat Pittsburgh connection.
Equipment: Pittsburgh Spice & Casing in Crafton has all varieties of casings available for pick up or shipped. Donatellis and Wholey also have some home-size packs of hog casing. If you don’t have equipment to case sausage give us an email.
Dairy & Cheesemaking
If you’re in need of good milk for cheese (minimally processed) scan the Real Milk for local listings. For quality milk for yogurt and kefir the East End Coop is a great place to go. For animal or vegetable rennet Cultures for Health delivers quickly. For the best guide for making cheese at home see David Asher’s The Art of Natural Cheesemaking.
Grains & Legumes
Hands down the best source in Western Pa for grain is Frankferd Farms in Saxonburg carrying a complete inventory of grains, flours, and a lot more from local and reputable sources. Primarily a wholesale distributor, they generously provide public access to their warehouse as well.
During the warmer months here’s a great listing of all the area farm markets. In the winter there is the Bloomfield Winter Market and the East Liberty Indoor Market. Talk to your favorite farmers about buying in bulk while produce is in season for eating your ferments all winter long. Most are happy to accommodate. You can also buy organic produce in bulk all year long at the East End Coop.
In the Strip District CFP Winemakers has equipment, juice, and grapes (seasonally). Just over the bridge from the West End South Hills Brewing has a larger selection of equipment suitable for the home hobbyist. The best resource to get started is From Vines to Wines by Jeff Cox, for the next step Creating World Class Red Wine has solid, easy to understand intermediate information. If you’re looking to purchase natural wine in the area, well you’ll have to pop over border from Uniontown into Maryland to Deep Creek Cellars.