The Cheese Making Process
Milk is brought across from the milking parlour to our dairy early in the morning, still warm from the cow, and piped into our cheese vat to begin the cheese making process. Once the correct temperature is reached, a starter culture is added, and an hour later we pour in a carefully measured quantity of vegetarian rennet, which causes the milk to coagulate, or solidify, to form curd. The curd is then cut vertically and horizontally to form cubes using special stainless steel curd knives, and the cubes separate from the whey. After a period of heating and stirring, the whey is drained off, leaving a mass of curd, which is cut into blocks and stacked to encourage more whey to be released. Eventually, the blocks of curd are passed through a mill, which chops them up into pieces so the salt can be added. The final stage is filling the cheese moulds, which have been lined with cheesecloth, with the salted curd, and stacking them in the press to be pressed overnight.
Next day, the cheeses are removed from the moulds and placed on wooden shelves in our cheese store to start maturing. Each cheese has to be turned every day for the first two weeks, then periodically, to ensure they mature correctly, and batches are tested and sampled regularly as part of our quality control checking.
Our traditional hard-pressed artisan farmhouse cheese is made exclusively with the beautiful creamy milk from our own herd of Ayrshire cows.
The Ayrshire breed of dairy cow originates in Scotland. Our cows are hardy and placid, and their creamy milk is renowned for its excellent cheese making properties.
Buy our artisan cheese at various regular local produce markets, as well as in delicatessens and retail outlets in the area.