Spring Cheese News

It has been ages since our last newsletter, July in fact, and we are now headlong into a very promising (except for this week) spring. Staff moving on to new projects and others having babies has meant that we have not had a lot of time for newsletters and such. Now the new faces behind the counter are getting trained up it means that we can now relax a bit and take stock.

Call out for Fondue sets
Next week at the (sold out and oversubscribed) Whisky Cheese tasting, we are going to attempt a mass fondue and need some good quality (cast iron or pot) Fondue sets.  Between us we have a few, but need a few more.  If anyone has a spare at the back of the cupboard we would love to borrow it.  We promise to look after it and return fully cleaned. Please, please let us know – either by email or phone the shop 379 0075

New and wonderful cheeses

Neudorf Pecorino made by Fiona Guyan and Brian Beuke – sweet, salty and very lovely.

Raclette – a different one than normal, recommended by our Swiss supplier Rachel Sills. It is square in shape and made by Risler.  Fairly mild when we first receive it, we keep it for a couple of months to develop flavour and a good sticky rind.

Lancashire – new cheese just cut on the counter. Martin’s favourite made by Graham Kirkham and team in Goosnargh. Perfect, as is, with an Eccles cake, or on a sandwich, or toasted, or crumbled onto a salad, or in mashed potato, or gently simmered with milk and an egg in a kind of (Yorkshire) Fondue, or with a glass of whisky.

Donge Brie de Meaux – we have stocked this cheese now for about 18 months, originally imported by Le Marche cheese sellers in Wellington. It’s proper raw milk Brie from a Triconville, east of Paris, in the Ile-de-France. Strong with oodles of flavour, including hints of cabbage and ozoney oysters, this is what Brie is all about.

Windsor and Valdeon – two blues, one from Whitestone in Oamaru and the other from Leon in northern Spain. Completely different but both beautiful.

Goats – any and all, glorious new season New Zealand, and wondrous French.

Hellos and Goodbyes

As we mentioned earlier it’s been all change at the cheesemongers staff wise.  Tash the Baker had been with us for seven wonderful years, but now has moved on to work with Glynn Abbott at The Cakery in the Tannery complex.  Natalie the Cheesemonger and Baker left a couple of months ago to join her husband in New Mexico. Lisa the Cheesemonger has taken leave to look after her new baby George (born 15 September) and part timer Louise has also gone to have baby number two due later this month.  To replace all these wonderful people we have some new faces and a returning one.  Raisa is back after a year off with her little boy Sampo, Amanda has been with us for a few months now and is proving very capable with both cheese and baking.  Andrea is the most recent full time recruit (poached from CCC).  Two new part timers, Emma and Lisa complement the team, helping out at the busy end of the week.

Farmers Market

We’re still not at our regular Saturday market at Deans Bush. All being well we will be back there, with our little van, in mid November when the new staff are a little more trained. In the meantime remember our shop at the Arts Centre is open on Saturdays from 10am to 4pm and there is lots of free parking around the building and in market square. Lots of glorious cheese, piles of proper bread, eccles cakes, cheese straws, cups of coffee and cheese sandwiches. Plus all the new and exciting developments nearby in our ever changing central city.

Karikaas butter

Artisan butter is the new kid on the block – rich, flavourful and intensly satysfying spread on good bread and don’t heed your doctor! There are lots of new ones to tempt but our favourite, and we think the best, is from Karikaas. They have been making their unsalted cultured butter out in Loburn for years and is butter as it should be. Made every Tuesday, it is fresh in the shop by Wednesday lunchtimes.

Culture Magazine

The new edition of the Bugle of the cheese world is just out. Lots of stuff to rave about including a sheep cheese producer in Italy, children and cheese making in Vermont, American goat’s milk blues, cheesemaking in Canada, as well as recipes and cheesemongers tips and rants.

Dish Magazine

The current edition features NZ cheesemongers from Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch (us – of course!). It’s interesting reading to compare how our approach differs from the others and also good to know that there are more independent retailers to support the cheesemakers as an alternative supplying supermarkets.

New Restaurants

Lots of new places opening up and the best are taking cheese from us:

Harlequin Public House on the corner of Salisbury and Montreal Sts is Jonny Schwass’s latest and biggest venture.  Look out for great NZ cheeses in the menu and some of their bread is from us too.

Tequila Mockingbird is another Victoria St precinct addition and is using our cheese in their Fonduta (South American Fondue) and also the superb goat and cow blue from Spain, Valdeon as a cheese course.

Watch out for our cheeses on the menus of about to open Rydges Hotel in Latimer Square and Mitchellis at the Tannery.

……..And nearly forgot, Roy Arbon’s new season Honey

In the last month we have had umpteen visits from Roy Arbon with our yearly allowance of West Coast honey. There is Manuka, Rata, Kamahi, Comb and Honey Dew. All different, and all passionately collected and processed by Roy. His honey is arguably the best in New Zealand and his advocacy for small scale, organic and sustainable honey production is heartfelt and utterly persuasive.