Sunset Acres Farm
       and Dairy
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Name:          Sunset Acres Dairy Farm

Location:     769 Bagaduce Road

                      Brooksville, Maine  04617

Phone:          207-326-0700




Products and Services:

  1. -artisanal goat cheese

  2. -farmstead goat cheese

  3. -USDA and state-licensed Grade A Dairy

  4. -raw milk

  5. -distributor of Maine-raised lamb, beef, poultry

What Makes the Sunset Acres Farm & Dairy Unique?

It’s a challenge to keep track of all the different

farming endeavors with which Bob Bowen and

Anne Bossi have been involved.  They have raised just about every farm animal on a commercial basis that one could imagine - sheep, rabbits, geese, ducks, laying hens, and even tropical fish. Since 1998, Bob and Anne have earned a great deal of recognition for their impressive selection of artisanal and farmstead goat cheeses.

But, back in 1989, when Bob moved into Anne’s home and twenty-three acre farm bordering the Bagaduce River in Brooksville, making goat cheese on a commercial basis was not part of their business plan.  Bob brought fifty sows with him that he jokingly labeled “his dowry.”  Life had been tough for him at that time with the health concerns brought about by having broken his leg on two different occasions and losing his farm.   Getting by financially by farming alone was a major concern.

Bob and Anne pioneered the concept of the CSA -Community Supported Agriculture in 1990, when they offered “Barn Bucks.”  It was a program that enabled participants to receive $110 worth of farm products in exchange for a contribution of $100 at the beginning of the season.  They had visited Joel Salatin in Virginia to learn about pastured poultry production and needed some help with getting a similar chicken business off the ground.

Anne Bossi worked for Heifer International during those days when Bob was raising pastured poultry. After time elapsed, Bob and Anne decided to raise the chickens in a hoop house.  Their flock of 700 laying hens proved to be very space intensive and labor intensive.  The raising of turkeys followed the years of the chickens.

By 1993, Bob and Anne were traveling with their chicken and eggs to several farmers markets around Maine including Ellsworth, Blue Hill, Bangor, Brooksville, Northeast Harbor, Bar Harbor, and Stonington.

But, raising chickens and turkeys just didn’t seem to cut it, so Bob and Anne introduced another segment to their farm - yes, a tropical fish operation!  In the meantime, the herd of goats seemed to grow by leaps and bounds. Bob raised meat goats for two years, but found it was not cost effective.  The dairy goat aspect of the farm with their artisanal and farmstead cheeses proved to be extremely popular at the farmers’ markets.

What started with three goats in 1980, has transformed into a full-fledged dairy of over 100 Saanen, Nubian, and Alpine goats today.  The goats eat “free-choice leafy green hay and native clover” and their grain contains no artificial hormones or meat by-products.  The goats are raised in large airy greenhouses rather than stuffy dark barn structures.  They have a large field in which to graze.

After making cheese on a small scale for three years, Anne finally “got up the moxie” to retire

from her job with Heifer International.  She explained that she has enjoyed her “retirement”

even though she is working longer and harder than ever before.

The goat cheeses that Bob and Anne make are created with the traditional European method of using ladles to transfer the curd into cheesecloth bags or individual forms.  They feel the extra time that they dedicate to making their cheese this old-fashioned way contributes to a higher quality flavor and texture.  Sunset Acres incorporates European cultures and vegetable rennet in their cheeses.  Their herbed cheeses are composed of freshly-harvested garlic, peppercorns, and organically-grown or dried herbs.

Anne and Bob are well-known for their line of

spreadable chevres.  They make several types of

chevres including Garlic and Herb, Parisienne, Pesto No Nuts, Chipolte, Garlic and Dill, Rosemary, Tomato and Basil, and Horseradish.

If you have a moment to check out their Specialty Cheeses on their website, I think you would agree that they look like works of art.  The Gardien and Olivier are produced in different size forms and they are garnished with extra virgin olive oil, herbs, freshly ground pepper, and pink peppercorns.  The Boulettes and Herb Logs look amazing!

And then there are the other-worldly Bloomy Rind Cheeses.  If you are not familiar with these mold-ripened or bloomy-rind cheeses, it’s definitely worth exploring them.  Their “Sea Smoke” cheese is a nine-ounce dense and creamy cheese with three layers of ash.  Robert K. Elder of The Chicago Tribune labeled this cheese “The Holy Grail of Cheese.”  Other specialty bloomy rind cheeses that Sunset Acres produces include Stonington Granite, Camenbert, Fleur de Bossi, Bagaduce Brie, and River Rock.

How appropriate that Anne and Bob have chosen local Maine names for several of their cheeses. Their cheeses are sold throughout Maine.  When you listen to them explain their delivery and farmer markets’ schedules, it’s downright overwhelming!  They participate in the European Market in Bangor year-round.  On Saturdays from May through October,  you can find them at the Blue Hill Market.  It’s the Brooksville Farmers’ Market on Tuesdays.  They head to the Stonington Market on Fridays; Northeast Harbor on Thursdays; and Bar Harbor on Sundays.

If you have a hankering to try their cheeses and don’t live near any of the farmers markets mentioned above, don’t despair.  Their cheeses are sold at Royal River Health Food in Freeport; Whole Foods, Horton’s, and Rosemont Market and Bakery in Portland; Tradewinds Market in Blue Hill; John Edwards Market in Ellsworth; Sawyer’s Market in Southwest Harbor; Rosemont Market and Bakery in Yarmouth; Pine Tree Market in Northeast Harbor; Morning Glory Provisions in Brunswick; and Belfast Coop in Belfast.

Sunset Acres Farm also purchases Maine-grown beef, lamb, and poultry through a federally-inspected processing plant.  The beef and lamb are grass-fed and fresh.  The poultry is free-range in a huge barn and they are fed a meat-free diet and essential oils.  A listing of the various meat products that are available to order can be found on the Sunset Acres’ website.

When Unique Maine Farms visited Sunset Acres Farm, Bob was quite occupied with several phone calls and arranging orders.  It appears that he has become quite a salesman.  He even has a thriving goat manure business.  The sign on his pickup truck reads, “Goat Poop - U Call- I Haul!”

Raw goat milk is also sold at Sunset Acres Farm.

There is a market for the raw milk for individuals with certain medical conditions.  Anne and Bob like to see the raw milk benefit the cancer patients, lactose intolerant children, and senior citizens who require it.

Unique Maine Farms found Bob and Anne and their interns to be extremely welcoming.  Although their farmers markets and delivery schedules appear to be rather staggering, they seem to have created a very laid-back and easygoing atmosphere at their farm.  It was interesting to read about the extremely cooperative and supportive relationship that they have developed with Jesse Leach who operates an oyster farm on the Bagaduce River adjacent to their property.  The article about their mutually beneficial farm arrangement entitled “Two Farmers Share A River” appeared in The Working Waterfront on July 29, 2009.

With 100-140 goats on the premises of Sunset Acres Farm & Dairy, there is always a great deal that needs to be tackled. The goats are milked twice a day. Anne and Bob have welcomed interns to their farm for several years.  They often have foreign students helping out.  When Unique Maine Farms visited there were interns from China and the Phillipines.  There are three cabins and a camper at Sunset Acres to house the interns.

While Bob and Anne may have reduced the various selection of animals that they now raise,

their commitment to sustainable farming has

not waned.  They support other Maine farms by selling their Maine-raised lamb, poultry, and beef. Their cheeses have been recognized at national cheese competitions.  They are an American Cheese Society winner who has put Brooksville, Maine, on the map. 

Bob Bowen and Anne Bossi

At Bangor Harvest FestivalSunset_Acres_-_Bangor.htmlSunset_Acres_-_Bangor.htmlSunset_Acres_-_Bangor.htmlshapeimage_5_link_0shapeimage_5_link_1
The GoatsSunset_Acres_Farm_-_The_Goats.html