Like the British Empire, cheddar conquered the world—it’s the planet’s most widely copied cheese. Ironically, with so much emphasis on imitation, the original has become an endangered species. It’s rarely found in this country and is worlds apart in character from its copycat cousins.
Montgomery’s is one of only three farms in its ancestral homeland making truly traditional farmhouse English cheddar. Big, clothbound drums are made by veteran cheesemaker Steve Bridges every day except Friday. All the milk comes from Jamie Montgomery's herd of just under 200 Holstein-Fresian cows, which graze on a nearby hill rumored, incidentally, to be the site of Camelot. Their cheeses have a golden color, a warm, flaky texture and a penetrating, memorable flavor. Each one is spoken for—they're taking no new customers.
Once, at a bar in London, someone told me "Cheddar should be like a neighbour's party," which is a line I don't quite understand but have never forgotten. It is a totally appropriate way to describe the easy, unforgettable flavor of Montgomery's cheddar.
Holy cow! The current wheel of English Farmhouse Cheddar has big, brothy flavors and a long, long finish. There are also a few blue veins in there, which show up now and again in this cheddar. It was made in March 2014.
"If I could come back as a mouse, I'd like to live in your place! That English Farmhouse Cheddar is the best I've ever had!"
Ellen, Creston, IA