Cheese of the Month Selection

£45.50

Each month we choose four of the cheeses which we think are tasting best. We particularly like to feature cheeses which are in season, as well as batches of cheese which are tasting especially delicious in a particular month. Frequently we have limited quantities of new or experimental cheeses which we introduce to our customers through this selection. You will receive approximately 1.2 kg of cheese. The selection you receive will vary depending on the month you choose for the selection to arrive.

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Our August selection reflects on the Specialist Cheesemaker’s Association (SCA) annual farm visit back in June. Whilst there, some of our team were able to visit the make room of Duckett’s Caerphilly, and to see Chris Duckett’s original brine for ourselves. We were also able to congratulate Jonny and Dulcie Crickmore on being winners of the James Aldridge Memorial Trophy. Both of these cheeses are included in this selection. Old Ford, a cheese that is exclusive to Neal’s Yard Dairy, and Brunswick Blue, a cheese that represents the huge impact of maturation on flavour, are also included here. These two cheeses characterise the importance of the close relationship between us and cheesemakers we work with.

OLD FORD
Made by Mary Holbrook in Somerset.
Raw goat’s milk, animal rennet.

We are delighted to be able to include Old Ford in this month’s selection. Unlike her other goat’s cheeses, whose production is often delegated to other members of her team, Mary makes every batch of Old Ford herself. The curds are cut and stirred by hand, allowing more sensitivity to the hardening of the curds. They are then washed with hot water which prevents the risk of them over acidifying. The flavour of the batches we are sending out this month is at once fruity, lemony and briny, with a creamy yet firm texture.

BRUNSWICK BLUE
Made by Ben Harris and his team at Ticklemore Dairy in Devon.
Pasteurised Sheep’s milk, vegetarian coagulant

Brunswick Blue is the result of our experiments with Beenleigh Blue. Rather than being wrapped and refrigerated as Beenleigh is, Brunswick is matured by us on our shelves in our maturation arches, allowing it to develop a natural rind and the cheese within to take on a creamier texture and breakdown. The flavour is nutty and milky, with a pleasant sharpness from the blueing that is not overpowering.

BARON BIGOD
Made by Jonny Crickmore in Bungay, Suffolk..
Raw cow’s milk, animal rennet

Baron Bigod is made with the milk from the farm’s herd of Montebeliarde cows, favoured for their protein-rich milk which produces a particularly unctuous cheese. Jonny Crickmore won the prestigious James Aldridge Memorial Trophy this year at the annual farm visit of the Specialist Cheesemakers Association. This award is particularly special as nomineees are elected by their fellow cheesemakers, and entries are judged by a panel of SCA experts. The batches we are sending out this month are carrying a buttery, mushroomy flavour with a pleasant acidity which brings contrast at the core.

DUCKETT’S CAERPHILLY
Made by Tom Claver and team at Westcombe Dairy in Somerset.
Raw cow’s milk, animal rennet.

When Chris Duckett passed away in 2009 Tom Calver took over the making of this cheese full time. The 20 year old brine from Chris’s original tank is still used to salt the cheese., bringing with it a microbial community that is unique to the rind of Duckett’s Caerphilly. The core of the cheese offers clean, bright flavours, whilst the breakdown under the rind is mushroomy and milky. The texture manages to be both crumbly and succulent. This is a cheese to savour.

It can sometimes be hard to know how much cheese to buy. If you are at all unsure please give us a call for some advice. As a general rule of thumb, we would recommend roughly between 100 and 150 grams per person for after dinner, and a bit more if cheese is the focus of the meal.

If you are buying cheese to serve over a couple of days or as part of a buffet, it is advisable to buy a few larger pieces. This will both look better and keep better than many small bits.

To help visualise weights, a good tip is to consider that a regular supermarket pat of butter weighs between 200 and 250 grams.

Farmhouse cheese is handmade and thus varies with each day’s production and changes as it matures. As such it is necessary to apply a common sense approach to cheese care and respond to the cheese you have in front of you, as opposed to following rigid guidelines. Here are some pointers which will help you to ensure you eat your cheese at its best.

We sell our cheese wrapped in waxed cheese paper, which achieves the best possible balance between maintaining humidity around the cheese and allowing it to breathe. We are happy to provide some extra cheese paper, you can add some to your basket by visiting “accompaniments“. If you wrap your cheese in cling film or foil, it can cause the cheese to sweat which will negatively affect the flavour.

Cut pieces of cheese should be kept in the refrigerator to slow the growth of mould on their cut surfaces. However, it is important to be aware that refrigerated cheese is more likely to dry out, particularly if it is not wrapped. The best option is to keep the cheese wrapped in its waxed paper within a box in the fridge. The container will help to prevent the cheese from drying out and prevent the cheese from absorbing flavours.

It is very important not to serve your cheese when it’s too cold as cold cheese can taste bland and inert. As a general rule of thumb you should bring it out of the fridge a few hours before you plan to serve it. You should keep your cheese wrapped whilst it is coming up to room temperature, to avoid any risk of it drying out. If it is especially warm you should reduce the amount of time the cheese is out of the fridge accordingly.

Weight 1200 g