Cheeses for November

3rd November 2016

We have four cheeses of the month for you that carry a 20% discount – look out for the red star:

Rollright –a rich buttery cheese with the nuttiness of a reblochon, a soft paste, tender pinky apricot washed rind and gentle gamey aroma.  It is a new cheese made at King Stone Farm, Oxfordshire where the ‘King Stone’ is located – one of the ancient Rollright Stones and a religious and spiritual place for pagans.  The farm has a mixed selection of cattle that graze on clover and herb pasture – a large proportion are Swiss Brown, the ancient breed from the Swiss Alps whose milk is ideal for cheese making.  Even though it is a new cheese first produced last year, it has already won supreme champion at the Artisan Cheese Awards.

Rob, our Corney & Barrow wine man recommends pairing their Cotes-du-Rhone from Vignobles Gonnet as this style of cheese goes  well with slightly peppery wines, such as the Rhone; the violet notes and plummy spice will match the rich buttery notes of the Rollright with good, even lasting concentration on the finish. Heavenly connotations abound!


Vacherin – has an exquisitely soft creamy centre – unlike any other. Best enjoyed when it has been baked for 15 minutes and is gorgeously runny.  It’s only made from the winter milk of cows brought down from their pastures in the Jura mountains for the season. The cheese is delicate with an orangey pink washed rind and lingering rich flavour and bound by a band of spruce which permeates the cheese giving it a distinct and pleasant aroma.

Glera is probably one of the most popular grapes in the world, though many people have never heard of it! It is the constituent varietal in Prosecco and offers lovely tempting notes of honeydew melon, green pear & apple. With Vacherin Rob always recommend a sparkler, and preferably an ‘all white’ one so it must be the Corney & Barrow Sylvoz Prosecco from Le Colture; a classic expression, with all the lovely notes present. It goes well with the weight and softness of the cheese, and keeps everything light as well as marrying gentle fruits with an awash richness. One for the brunching parties!


Sparkenhoe Red Leicester – is a creamy and mellow cheese with a slightly flaky texture and beautifully nutty taste.  Made by David and Jo Clarke of the Leicestershire Handmade Cheese Company to an old traditional recipe, it is England’s only unpasteurised Red Leicester. The addition of natural annatto gives the cheese its deep orange-red colour.

Rob suggests the 50/50 Rioja from Belezos Bodegas Zugober to match this cheese – a tremendous example of young Rioja full of luscious red berry fruit and with a handsome amount of acidity, providing lift to the wine. This provides a naturally agreeable pairing with the creamy, mellowness of the Red Leicester and allows for some of the subtleties in the wine to really come to the fore. Rather a straightforward one really!


Kirkhams Lancashire – this is the last farmhouse raw-milk Lancashire in the world and is creamy yellow with a rich creamy ‘buttery crumble’ flavour. The Kirkhams make this traditional cheese using the exceptionally high quality milk from their own Holstein Friesian herd, a two day curd recipe and only a tiny amount of starter culture so the cheese has a rich, yet light and fluffy texture.  It is clothbound and matured for 3-6 months and develops an extraordinary complex, yoghurty, fresh acidic flavour.

The Panul Sauvingon Blanc is Rob’s recommendation, though he could equally suggest a Port as well- such is the versatility this cheese lends to pairing options! The zip & panache of the cooler climate Sauvignon’s just add a touch of focus to these creamier cheeses without overbearing them. As a rule its important to strike a balance between assets on either side of the match up, and this Sauvignon is purely straightforward (though exceedingly delicious) which would allow the complexities of the cheese to flourish- a winner!