With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, it’s once again time to prepare ourselves for the onslaught of cheesy romance. The endless shelves of heart shaped gifts, red roses and sickeningly sweet cards are enough to make anyone dread this day, whether single or not. There’s simply no avoiding it – so this year, why not make the most of things and embrace the “cheese”?
Scotland is a fantastic destination with beautiful scenery, historic attractions and perhaps most importantly, incredible food. There are dozens of specialist independent producers in the country with offerings to please all taste buds.
Here are five amazing Scottish cheese makers that deserve some recognition – so this Valentine’s Day treat yourself, go ahead and get tasting!
1: Highland Fine Cheeses – situated to the West of Tain along the Dornoch Firth coast, Highland Fine Cheeses is an artisan cheese-making business with a long family history. Run from a small, independent farm, HFC specialise in mould ripened cheeses such as brie, blue and washed rind styles. All products are handmade with meticulous care and attention, so give of their cheeses a try from their “Crowdie” to their “Strathdon Blue”.
2: Dunlop Dairy – are another family run dairy that have been making cheese since 1989. Using cow, sheep and goat’s milk, the Dunlop Dairy have won multiple national awards for their products, and now sell them from their own shop and tearoom on the farm in Ayrshire, in the south east of Scotland. Give their newest addition the “Paddy’s Milestone” a try – a unique soft cows cheese with a creamy texture, or the favourite “Traditional Ayrshire Dunlop”, a hard cheese similar to cheddar.
3: Orkney Cheese – a little more accessible, these famous cheddar producers are based in Orkney, using fresh milk from cattle on the fertile farmland. They adopt a unique “dry-stir method” in making the cheese that involves continually stirring the curds for a firmer, well rounded and mellow cheese. Give their Orkney White Mature Cheddar a go, matured for 10 to 18 months to produce a versatile cheese which is great on its own or as an addition to cooking due to its low oil content.
4: Kedar Cheese Company – if mozzarella is more your thing, the Kedar Cheese Co. are an excellent option. Based in the southwest of Scotland, these cheese makers use the finest dairy cows fed on a rich diet of nutritional grasses to produce high quality milk. Kedar Cheese will show you that mozzarella isn’t just something the Italians can master, with a distinct sweet richness and salty tang to their cheeses that will make you come back for more.
5: Isle of Mull Cheese – a small family run farm in the beautiful Isle of Mull off the West Coast of Scotland. They use traditional cheese making practices, tried and tested for hundreds of years, to make the finest organic cheeses. Cheeses are left to mature in the farmhouse’s cellar for many months before becoming available at their own farm shop welcome to visitors.
Have we inspired your inner traveller to visit the stunning sights of Scotland yet? If so, browse our tours here and get in touch with us today if you’ve got any questions. We’d be more than happy to help you choose the perfect tour for your needs.