This is a cheese we don't stock all year round but love to get in for Christmas - it's a firm favourite on many a Christmas Day cheeseboard.
Produced on a farm in the Lincolnshire Wolds by brothers Simon and Tim Jones - ten miles from the coast, in an area where there is very little dairy farming never and where cheese production is virtually unknown. The drier climate and well-drained chalky soil allows them a particularly long grazing season.
The cheese is produced to a recipe which is a cross between a traditional West Country Cheddar and an Alpine cheese such as Comte - something which you really appreciate from the dense creamy texture of the cheese.
For the environmentally conscious among us their aim is to manage the farm and business to have as little negative impact on the environment as possible with a large number of renewable projects going such as wine turbines, solar panels and specialist heating.
The farm is currently being run by the fourth generation of Jones - it was Simon who started teh cheesemaking business back in 1992. He took on cheesemaker Richard Tagg who is still head cheesemaker, they have since created a bigger dairy and now the vast majority of the farm's milk is turned into cheese.
We generally stock the standard Poacher which is matured for 14 to 16 months and which is full of flavour. Having said that the flavour and texture of the cheese can vary seasonally depending on the time of year, stage of lactation, weather and other factors. Every batch is tasted at 12 months old and they decide whether it is a Poacher or to be aged longer to be Vintage which is aged for around 2 years.
A firm favourite amongst all our Cheesemongers - words they use to describe it are delicious, fruity, sweet and juicy. Well-rounded, full-flavoured, rich and smooth. When we open it the smell that immediately hits is incredible.
Cheddars are great melting cheeses so are great on pizza, pasta, in grilled cheese sandwiches, in pies etc. We found this delicious sounding recipe from the Lincolnshire Poacher website for Cheese Scones - take a look here.
Cracker Recommendation (we also have a GF version of these):