Monforte Dairy, Stratford On

The course I am currently taking is all about the cheese making and affinage process…a subject I find quite daunting. As a visual learner it’s hard to imagine all the steps to making the final product without seeing it first hand. Thanks to the team at Monforte, and my new teacher Ruth Klahsen, we were able to experience a day in the life of a cheese maker.

Monforte Dairy has faced many challenges as a small scale sheep dairy. Let’s just say if you’re not making cheese with cow milk, most government funding is out of reach. Ruth’s ingenuity to implement CSA subscriptions, or advance payment for future deliveries of cheese, allowed her to receive a grant from the government to renovate her facilities and continue producing amazing cheese.

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After a long day, I welcomed a hot meal of prime rib and asparagus topped with one of Monforte Dairy’s hard, aged sheep cheese. This cheese has a dark, craggy rind and a sweet, golden paste. It has been rubbed in olive oil which creates another level of umami and a perfect, meaty addition to the sweetness of the asparagus. And now to bed…

Hard, aged sheep cheese rubbed with olive oil.

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