Tis the season for a cheesin’

Tis the season for a cheesin’

A quarter truckle of Westcombe Farmhouse Cheddar Cheese at Withies Delicatessen, Somerset

Give me a good sharp knife and a good sharp cheese and I’m a happy man

George R R Martin

Cheese is selling well at the moment. Beer & Cider have tapered off but the miniatures of gin and vodka are always popular as they make great gifts. Bread is usually in the top 2 or 3 every day. I do get frustrated sometimes when I bake a fresh batch of sourdough or focaccia and nobody buys it but then I have to remind myself that sometimes people are being held at gunpoint and can’t make it out, in which case tell your captors to pop in once they’ve finished, or better yet on their way to their terrorist action, then at least you can all have a nice sandwich or some toast.

I know everybody that’s been in has tried our Cornish Gouda and you’re coming back for more as we’re cracking through about a wheel a week, which is great for you, us and Giel and his family who make it. But there’s a newcomer on the scene. 

We sold a whole wheel of this in two days. And people are coming back for more. 

Ilaria Padovani is our Italian buyer. I’m in love with her and her family. I want them to move in with us and bring all of their cheeses. A graduate of the Science of Gastronomy at the Universita degli Studi di Parma she knows food and she knows cheese. And she asked the cheesemakers, Palzola, to make a special Gorgonzola just for her. It’s aged for less time than your standard Gorgonzola so it’s runny and sweet, but the concentration of blue has been upped so it still has that Gorgonzola spice that whips your head around and makes you growl at anyone approaching the cheese board. It’s incredible and if you come in the store I will share it with you.

But that’s not all. There’s a Taleggio that is sweet and subtle, that caresses your tastebuds as it melts into your pasta. It’s also incredible toasted on crispy sourdough with just the thinnest layers of mustard underneath. There’s a Pecorino from Piedmont that is to die for but my new favourite of all is called Toma. I was instantly drawn to this cheese by it’s rustic rind, with dark runes emblazoned on the top. Cutting into it reveals the contrasting pate, firm but still bouncy and pliable. And the taste, O M G as the kids say. You can literally taste the farm; stone walls and green paddocks spreading under the clear blue Italian skies. In fact what am I doing here? I’m going to go eat some now. As soon as I’ve dealt with these terrorists.

A Grenade and a sandwich

Give me bread or give me bullets

General Douglas MacArthur

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