Founded by Eugene & Mary Burns in 1980 using pasteurised milk from their own herd of cows on their farm in Kanturk, County Cork. It is pale golden in the centre with a sticky orange rind with a supple, dense, creamy interior with a sweet savoury taste, which intensifies with age. Lactic, salty and mildly pungent when young; when more mature, creamy/lactic, salty, hazelnuts, pungent farmyard aromas.
Pair with: Aromatic whites, Hugel Gewurztraminer, Rebel Red Beer, Full Bodied Shiraz. It is a growing trend to use a sweet wine such as Sancerre or Long Mountain with a mature flavour cheese. Ardrahan also goes very well with a glass of port.
A Gouda-style cow’s milk cheese made in west Cork by Dicky Willems and his wife. The cheese is smooth hard and golden colour with a few small holes in the paste. The paste becomes slightly deeper in colour and drier as the cheese ages. In cheeses matured 18 months plus, some protein crystals can be seen. It has a fruity, mild flavour when young but intensifies to a rich nutty caramel spiciness as it ages.
Pair with: Trimbach Tokay Pinot Gris.
Ireland’s first Ewes milk blue cheese made by the Grubb family in Co. Tipperary who also produce Cashel Blue. The milk comes from British Friesland ewes grazed on limestone, which gives a soft creamy piquancy & peppery taste. The cheese turns creamy with age. (Made using vegetarian rennet).
Pair with: Vin Santo, Vins Doux Naturels from Muscat.
Durrus Cheese is a raw milk (Unpasteurised) cheese, made using traditional methods in the upland valley of Coomkeen, on the Sheep’s Head peninsula, Co. Cork. Coral-coloured, semi-soft, rind it is a washed cheese made from the milk of local herds. The complex, deep flavour of the cheese captures something of the wild elemental nature of this part of Cork where, sometimes, the sun shines, but more often, the wind blows in salt-drenched rain from the Atlantic.
Pair with: Aromatic whites: Pinot Gris, medium bodied reds, Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot with younger cheese. Shiraz with mature cheese champagne and prosecco.
David and Mairead Tiernan first made this wonderful hard creamy cheese in 2004. Its strength have been attributed to the excellent unpasteurised milk from their herd of Montbeliarde cow’s which are farmed in Dunleer County Louth. The cheese is aged to 24-months, which adds spice, nuttiness and a gentle aromatic taste (Made using animal rennet).
Pair with: Oaked Chardonnay, Vin Jaune de Jura.
Made by the Ferguson’s near Scholl Co. Cork and is a Cows milk Pasteurised cheese. It is a washed rind cheese and their unique rind gives Gubbeen its scented mushroom flavour. Tastes of butter, hazelnut, meadow flowers when young, notes of earth, mushroom and hay develop as the cheese matures as it ages the flavour intensifies and develops an oaky depth. The texture is smooth, firm and moist Hegarthy’s.
Hegarty’s Cheddar is a traditional cloth-bound cheddar made using pasteurised cow’s milk and vegetarian rennet. All their cheddar is matured a minimum of 12 months, with some mature wheels being held for 15 months plus before release. The Hegarty’s remove the cloth from their cheddars before dispatch. The flavour is smooth and nutty with a cheddary tang in the finish.
Pair with: Stonewell Cider
Knockdrinna Meadow Sheep’s Cheese
Knockdrinna Meadow is a semi-hard sheep’s pasteurised milk cheese. Washing the rind with an organic white wine wash naturally develops a beautiful pink rind. Subtle caramel and nutty flavours are developed while maturing, which become more robust when older. The cheese has often been described as having a hint of roast lamb. (Made using vegetarian rennet).
Ireland’s first farmhouse artisan cheese was created by Veronica Steele in West Cork. The cheese is an unpasteurised cow’s milk cheese with a washed rind, which has an orange pink colour. The paste is soft which becomes runny when more mature. The flavour is mushroomy and herbaceous, with full farmyard aroma.
Pair with: Off-dry Gewurztraminer, still cider.