Our Buyer, Alex, has given us his recommendations for your festive cheese board this Christmas.
Our whole Gorgonzola Dolce, which means sweet milk, weighs about 16Kg! As it ripens it begins to collapse under its own weight so it has a girdle of spruce to hold it up. Below the crust is a soft buttery blue cheese, which flows with golden cream. To serve from our Deli, we peel back the top and spoon it into a tub. The cheese nearer the crust is sold in tubs as a cooking cheese. Melt it over a sirloin steak or into pasta and serve with red wine and fresh salad.
Our cheese counter at Gloucester Services
Baron Bigod Cheese
The English answer to Brie de Meaux, Baron Bigod is a stunning brie-style cheese, with a rich, full, earthy flavour and a lingering finish. It’s made by Jonny Crickmore in Suffolk from the milk of his own herd of Montbeliarde cattle. These are the cattle that the many French and Swiss cheese makers insist on using as the milk is so rich and creamy. The warm milk straight from the milking parlour is handled as carefully as possible to preserve its delicate cell structure. The milk is gravity-fed to the dairy, where it is gently poured into the cheese vat. Each stage of the process is done by hand, from cutting the curds with long knives to carefully transferring the fragile curds into the moulds by using the traditional pelle-a-brie ladles.
Forget Stilton! In October 2006, American Joe Schneider, set up to revive the tradition of making unpasteurised Stilton. Unable to call his cheese ‘Stilton’, he set upon the name Stichelton, the old name for the town of Stilton. Unpasteurised milk, slow acidification and hand-ladling make this cheese a revelation. It is creamy, rich and nutty with a gentle blue tang. Stitchelton Toast by The Fine Cheese Co. are also highly recommended!
Our cheese counter at Tebay Services
Vacherin Mont D’Or
This is the most amazing Alpine cheese. It is only made in the winter months when the milk is not suitable to make Gruyere, so is perfect over the Christmas period. Each cheese is bound with spruce bark which helps give its unique flavour. Nestling under the crust is a golden pond of delight! We sell a large cheese, so you can buy it by the slice, but if you prefer, we sell whole small cheeses which you can bake in the oven whole. Just peel back the rust and dip in. Some people prefer to bake it with garlic cloves and a tiny splash of white wine and black pepper. Perfect do-it-yourself fondue!