A PERSONAL TOP TEN
Some years ago - probably in the days when Facebook was only a twinkle in its inventor's eye - we listed on our News page ten cheeses which we felt had particular qualities to recommend them. Now it's time to update that list. Some of the cheeses listed now were also included in our previous list, but others have now been chosen because we really feel that no good cheesemonger should be without them.
So, in no particular order of merit, here they are -
Vacherin du Mont d'Or - only available from us between mid-September and the end of December. A real stunner of a cheese, made with raw milk and unbelievably good whether eaten cold or baked in the oven. No wonder it's a medal winner!
Vintage Poacher - a big thank you to the Read family in Lincolnshire who produce this robust, hearty raw milk cheese. It's a perennial favourite with our customers and with us too!
Dorset Blue Vinney - another raw milk cheese which packs a punch. Made on a farm in Stock Gaylard, this is ideal for anyone who likes blue cheeses with a bit of attitude!
Aged Leicester - what's not to like with this cheese? We're not talking pre-packs here - this is a traditional cloth-bound Leicester, with a proper crust, and a mouthful of mellow flavours.
Holy Smoked - with its smooth texture and rich tan colour, this one of the best smoked cheeses around, and the only smoked Single Gloucester made in the entire country.
Camembert - the real thing, made in Normandy from raw milk. Great depth of flavour; a perfect cheese for a small cheese board, and delicious baked and then eaten with a crusty loaf.
Devon Blue - a winner of many prizes, this is a blue for those who like a cheese with a creamy flavour and a slight crumble in the texture. Devon Blue and ripe pears - a marriage made in cheese heaven!
Devon Oke - made at Stockbeare Farm near Okehampton for nearly a quarter of a century. Think smooth, buttery, and firm, with a crust smelling of Devon hayfields, and you have Devon Oke ...
Reblochon - a delicate raw milk cheese from the French Alps, ideal for baking with potatoes, cream, white wine and garlic, to make a real French tartiflette. Or just enjoy on a cheese board!
Beaufort - the king of raw milk mountain cheeses, we love this grated into omelettes, but a large wedge of it on the cheese board is delicious too.
Why not also think about incorporating a ring of Devon Oke, Dorset Blue Vinney, or Leicester into a cheese wedding cake? And if you can't think what to put on your cheese board, then why not try one or more of the above?