The Vella Cheese Company traces its roots to the 1920s, when Tom Vella arrived in Sonoma and began making cheese at the Sonoma Mission Creamery. The Vella Cheese Company was founded in 1931, and continued to grow and expand over the following decades, eventually moving into its current facility just off the Sonoma Plaza. The company became known for its fresh and dry Jack cheese, their version of an original American cheese created in Monterey during the California Gold Rush. Vella's Dry Jack is a hard cheese with a delicately brittle consistency. After being coated in oil and cocoa, the wheels are aged for 18-24 months, and develop texture not unlike Parmigiano, along with a sweet flavor, reminiscent of butterscotch.