ABOUT THE COMPETITION
The eight competitors received a 27kg truckle of Quicke's mature cheddar drawn from the same vat to 'level the playing field'.
We were then asked to care for the cheese at our cheese facilities for nine months, which explains the unusual presence of a British cheddar in our Spanish cheese filled warehouse!
In April the competing cheddars will be judged by a select committee of industry experts at a gala event hosted by Academy of Cheese and Quicke's in London.
The winner will be crowned the acclaimed title of 'Affineur of the Year 2022'!
HOW IT STARTED
The truckle of cheddar arrived back in June 2021. Straight away, Rupert and Roi from the Brindisa Cheese Project began the painstaking routine of hand-rubbing the cheddar with paprika and olive oil on a weekly basis. It is the same artisanal care that we use for our popular Menorcan Mahon cheese.
Rupert and Roi have been carefully considering how they mature and create an environment for the cheddar to develop.
To see the full story behind how the process started, click here.
A JANUARY UPDATE
After months of oiling and patiently tending to the Brindisa cheddar, it was time to do a taste test. It was safe to say that everyone was quite nervous! Observing and comparing photographs over time is one thing, but getting a real feel for the texture and flavour that is developing is a far more revealing examination of the cheese.
THE GRAND TASTING
To taste the cheddar Rupert inserted a tool which takes a piece of the cheese out - see the photos below. The end of the extracted cheese is then replaced to close back up the hole.
It was a very exciting moment to taste the six month old Brindisa cheddar. At the risk of ruining the surprise or giving too much away before the grand tasting in April, all that can be said is that it was absolutely delicious!
In December, the cheddar was only oiled once to give the mould a chance to develop. By allowing the mould to grow it adjusts the chemical structure of the cheese. What is particularly exciting about the cheddar is that lots of different types moulds have been created. This leads to a variety of flavours and textures that have not have been created before!
THE NEXT FEW MONTHS
As the competition looms in April, the cheddar will continue to be under the careful and scrutinising eyes of Rupert and Roi. We will all watch with great interest to see how the cheddar visually changes.
When asked how they felt about potentially winning the title?
They have admitted that after tasting, they're quietly confident...
Watch this space and roll on the awards ceremony!!