Ryan, Randy, and Joe LaGrander along with Randy’s wife Sandy were present May 18 at the Central Wisconsin Cheesemakers and Buttermakers Association (CWBCA) in Marsh-field where Randy was named a life member of the CWCBA.Randy’s father Dannie LaGrander received the same honorin 2004.Facebookphoto.
LaGrander’s Hillside Dairy a family enterprise

Plant supplies Culvers and many local restaurants, processes 1.2 million pounds of milk per day

Now in its third generation as a family operated business, LaGrander’s Hillside Dairy out at Fernwall and Broek Avenue in the Town of Worden is a local tradition. Purchased in November of 1960 by Dannie and Lorraine LaGrander, the plant is operated today by Ryan and Joe LaGrander, grandchildren of Dannie and Lorraine. So what’s made at LaGrander’s Hillside Dairy?

“The main types of cheeses we manufacture are Colby, Cheddar, Monterey Jack, Pepper Jack, Colby-Jack, Gouda, and of course Cheese Curds!”

Ryan says of what the plant produces for inventory. With 25 vats of cheese per day and 50,000 pounds of milk to make each vat, production takes 1.25 million pounds of milk per day.

The cheese produced meanwhile, takes many shapes.

“We make cheeses in a variety of shapes and sizes, including the traditional six-inch diameter longhorns, four-inch diameter mini horns, and 40 lb. blocks,” Ryan says. “Around 70 percent of our total production is cheese curds which are frozen and sent ou to breading facilities to be prepared for the deep frier!” He says. Randy LaGrander was approached by another manufacturer in the early 2000s about making cheese curds and freezing them for a restaurant, LaGrander’s Hillside Dairy is the sole supplier of Culver’s Cheese Curds, the restaurant being smaller at that time and since growing.

“We were already making quite a bit of cheddar cheese (which are made from cheese curds) for waxed longhorns and daisy wheels so we thought this would be great way of diversifying and getting into a more specialty product,” Ryan said of the relationship with Culvers. That means each Culver’s cheese curd comes from milk produced by local dairy farmers.

“All of our farms do a great job of supplying us with fresh milk on a daily basis,” Ryan says, with the cheese being milled into curds and then frozen for delivery to Culvers.

LaGrander’s Strives to support local businesses as well. Below are a few of the local stores and restaurants that serve LaGrander’s cheese.

• Boondocks in Wilson

• The Hill House at Boyd

• Martino’s in Stanley

• Village Haus in Boyd

• Boyd Catering

• Mesquite in Thorp

• Silver Dollar in Reseburg

• PJ’S Concessions in Chippewa, which does Country Fest,


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Rock Fest and NorthernWisconsin State fair

• Water’s Edge at Chippewa

• Hansens IGA

• Thorp SuperValu Photo by Joseph Back. • Aroma Cafe Whether near or far, LaGrander’s Hillside Dairy is having an impact on cheesemaking in Wisconsin!

LaGrander’s Hillside Dairy at Fernwall Avenue and Broek Road in Worden is known far and wide for its delicious cheese curds and other dairy products.

June 29, 2022