Old Winchester - Crystalline, Strong Gouda Style

Regular price £5.55

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Needing an outlet for their milk, Mike and Judie developed Old Winchester.  This Gouda-style cheese, aged for 20 months, is caramelised, smoky and with crystalline crunches.

In the New Forest at Lyburn Farm, Mike and Judie Smales have created a modern British classic cheese – Old Winchester.

As milk prices fell, Mike and Judie decided they needed an outlet for the milk from their 180 British Friesian cows.  Deciding to make cheese, they went on a one-day Cheddar-making course with Val Bines.  Armed with this basic knowledge the Smales decided to make a Gouda-style (the curd is washed so the cheese ends up slightly more sweet): “When we started to make cheese twelve years ago,” says Mike, “we deliberately chose not to make Cheddar, for all the obvious reasons, not least there are already quite a lot of them.  So we started with a Gouda-style recipe.”

Yet the cheese turned out a bit different from expected.  But not every mistake is bad!  Instead, the amazing Old Winchester was born: a cross between Gouda, Parmesan and Cheddar.  At the Courtyard Dairy it is aged for 20-months to give it a sweet, tangy, crystallised depth.  It is also known as Old Smales.

As well as a great ‘table cheese’ Old Winchester works incredibly well as a vegetarian Parmesan replacement, as it is made without animal rennet, you will often find chefs using it for vegetarian dishes.