At this year’s Winter Fancy Food show in San Francisco, I and two of my colleagues at Formaggio Kitchen – Kyra and Julia – were treated to a special opportunity: to taste Montgomery’s cheddar guided by an expert from Neal’s Yard Dairy and the cheese maker himself, Jamie Montgomery.
Every two years, the biggest festival in the cheese world happens in Bra, Italy. The event is known simply as “Cheese.” Cheesemakers, cheesemongers, journalists, food lovers and folks lucky enough to live close by, descend on the small town of Bra to sample, sell and eat literally tons of cheese.
One of the cheeses we get from Neal’s Yard Dairy in London is named for the town of Caerphilly because that’s where most of the wheels (made in the surrounding countryside) were sold. The delicious Caerphilly cheese we sell in our store today is made at Gorwydd Farm in the town of Llanddewi Brefi in Ceredigion.
We carry a wide selection of cheeses from the British Isles: Stilton, Keen’s, Ardrahan, Berkswell, Montgomery’s, Wensleydale and Stichelton to name but a few. One of the reasons we can count on this rich diversity and exceptional quality is the passionate team of cheese caretakers at Neal’s Yard Dairy.
Recently, a lot of the hype at Neal’s Yard Dairy has been about a new cheese from Wales called Hafod. I’m pretty excited, as it is the first new cheese that’s become available since I took on the role of British Isles cheese buyer, so I’d love to say a bit about the rather cool story behind it.