Every cheese has a story. Or at least it does if you buy controlled origin cheese, which guarantees the cows graze in a specific region, with expert cheesemakers crafting your purchase.
Rolf Beeler is known as “The Pope of Cheese”, an affineur based in Switzerland. He’ll hover over the artisan cheesemakers, expertly overseeing the aging process for his own ‘Sélection Beeler’. That means while you may be eating – for example – an Emmental, it will bear no resemblance to the rubbery offering from your local supermarket.
Tom Merkli from importer the Red Cow – and a family friend of Beeler – suggests you enjoy a cheese at any time of day with a glass of something or other, rather than wheeling out the cheeseboard after a heavy dinner. You needn’t limit yourself to wine, though: at a recent cheese degustation held at Virginia Plain, a raclette was matched with 666 Vodka from Tasmania; a vacherin with Brunswick’s Cavalier Brown Ale; an alp sbrinz with cider.
The ‘Sélection Beeler’ cheeses have gone through a Swiss finishing school of cheesemaking; being put through elaborate aging processes and often being made from the herbier milk of cows who graze at only the loftiest heights. Many are raw milk cheeses – a rarity in Australia.Others have been put through elaborate ageing processes or are made from the herbier milk of cows who graze at only the loftiest heights.
The next matched tasting night will be on November 20, and speaking from experience we can promise you'll get a solid bang for your buck here. If you just want to get your mitts on some of the goods, you'll find the goods here: Bill’s Farm, Richmond Hill Larder, Continental Butchery in Bayswater.