Winter. The wind and rain are here, and the snow too. It’s time to wrap up to watch winter sports, or get out and about yourself. But at the end of the day, it’s also time for a fine NZ cheese and a dark beer, a heavy red, or even better, a Japanese whisky. We’d suggest something like a Suntory Old Whisky, a beautiful whisky in a beautiful bottle.
At the Cheese Wheel we’ve been doing the hard yards on your behalf. We’re constantly trying fabulous new artisan cheeses, but we had a very special occasion recently when we got to try lots of cheeses from four cheesemakers all at once.
Have a look at our Facebook or Instagram pages for a photo or two. We were a bit spoilt for choice, but we’ll definitely roll out some stunners over the coming months. This month we feature two cheesemakers new to our boxes, and two new cheeses from two super reliable cheesemakers we have featured before.
BLUE – FROM HOHEPA
We included the Danbo from Hohepa in our February box.
Hohepa is an inspiring place. It’s a Rudolph Steiner-inspired home for people with intellectual disabilities, and they are fully involved in making the cheese. They have just released their blue so you are one of the first people to try it. We think it’s awesome – not too sharp but definitely full-flavoured, and really creamy. Try it with a Suntory Old Whisky or other Japanese whisky!
Region: Hawkes Bay. Type of milk: cow.
HATEA MA – FROM GRINNING GECKO
We welcome the award-winning Grinning Gecko to The Cheese Wheel.
You’d expect some mischief from a grinning gecko and that’s what you get with their Hatea Ma. Hatea is the local river in Whangarei and Ma means white in Māori. The mischief is because this is a Red Leicester style cheese, but it’s not red! It’s a semi-hard cheese with a citrus tang. They age it for at least 12 months, but this one has been aged for over 4 years. Eat slowly!
Try it with a Suntory Old Whisky or other Japanese whisky…!
Region: Whangārei. Type of milk: cow.
AGED GOUDA – FROM GERALDINE CHEESE
Another cheese from the redoubtable Geraldine Cheese (formerly Talbot Forest).There is a lot of world class gouda made in Aotearoa and this is one of those. It’s a little sweet, it’s a little creamy, it’s a little nutty and it’s a little smooth. Try it with a Suntory Old Whisky or other Japanese whisky…!!
Region: South Canterbury. Type of milk: cow.
ORGANIC BRIE – FROM THE CHEESE BARN
Welcome to The Cheese Barn, a wonderful maker of organic cheeses not far from Thames.
We reckon this is one of the most ‘brie-ish’ bries made in Aotearoa. They use vegetable rennet in the French style. Just exercise patience and make sure it’s perfectly ripe before gorging yourself! Try it with an Extra Dry or Brut Prosecco.
Region: Matamata-Piako. Type of milk: cow.