Festival Cheeseboard

Yesterday I shared a photo of my holiday feast cheeseboard on Mastodon. That’s reproduced above. I promised a blog post explaining what the various cheeses were, so here goes.

Right at the top is something that should be familiar to all of you. That’s Colston Bassett Stilton. It is widely available, and very good.

Bottom centre and right are two of my favorite cheeses: Gorwydd Caerphilly and Pitchfork Cheddar from Trethowan Dairy. The Trethowan brothers started making the Caerphilly on their family farm in West Wales, but with success came the need for better milk supply and they moved to Somerset. Their two signature cheeses thus reflect the dairy’s twin heritage. As I never tire of telling people, the Caerphilly has won the gold medal at the World Cheese Awards, so it can truly claim to be the best cheese in the world.

Bottom left is a British Brie: Baron Bigod from Fen Farm Dairy in Suffolk. My tasting notes from the cheesemonger say it has hints of wild mushroom. Can’t go wrong with that.

Centre left is something very squidgy. It is Eve, a goat’s cheese washed in Somerset cider brandy and wrapped in vine leaves. It is made by White Lake Cheese in Somerset. I’m not sure I want my cheese quite that liquid, but it certainly tastes good.

In the centre is my favourite discovery of the year. It is Witheridge in Hay, made by Nettlebed Creamery in Oxfordshire. The cheese is quite literally aged in a wrapping of hay. I’m not sure that it is quite as strong as mature cheddar as the website claims, but it is quite robust and very tasty.

Finally we have centre right which is Abaty Glas from Caws Penhelyg near Aberystwyth. It is a mild blue cheese which is again very tasty but inevitably suffers from being next to the Stilton. I think maybe I should have it earlier in the tasting sequence.

I should note that many of these cheese are made with rennet and/or unpasteurised milk, and may not be suitable for everyone.