It’s that time of year again. The annual cheese fair organised and promoted by Country Cheeses is in Tavistock. It’s a great opportunity for their suppliers (artisan cheese makers, most of them local) and consumers to meet. A marketing and education exercise for them, and a learning and familiarisation opportunity for us. Also there were a few local suppliers of things that complement cheese, from chutney to booze.
As usual, I went round it, with a view to expanding the list of cheeses I’ll be enjoying over the next year. There are relatively few new (to me) cheeses that I like half as much as the ones I already know: I expect that comes of having been a customer of the shop for several years, and having been to past cheese fairs, so I’ve already had plenty of time to identify favourites. Just a couple more for the buy-list.
What’s really new this year is a cheese-making demonstration, by a lady who is apparently a leading expert, and is consultant to many of the producers. She took us through an accelerated process from liquid milk to curds, which she then put under compression as in making a conventional farmhouse cheddar. Apart from cheddar, she also showed stretching mozarella, and briefly described variants like soft and herbal cheeses. A fascinating demo!