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Say ‘sheep cheese’ at Grandvewe Sheep Cheesery

10 November 2011 No Comment

Grandvewe Cheese Tasmania

Tasmania is certainly famous for cheese. With clean air and water, green pastures and a temperate climate, many great cheese makers call the island home. Bruny Island, Ashgrove, Pyengana, Elgaar Farm and of course King Island are just a few names well-known to cheese lovers.

For something a little different in Tasmania’s south, head to Grandvewe Sheep Cheesery. Billed as Australia’s only organic sheep cheesery, it overlooks the beautiful D’Entrecasteaux Channel and is a nice afternoon’s drive from Hobart.

I say afternoon, because if you are there at 4.30pm between September and March, you can watch a sheep milking demonstration. At other times, you can watch it on a video in the tasting area instead. When lambs are in season, children are welcome to pat and feed them.

Another reason for an afternoon visit is the café, which is a good spot for lunch or afternoon tea, even in inclement weather.

Goat cheese has become more popular over the past decade, partly for the wonderful flavour and texture, but also because of health benefits over cheese made from cow milk. Sheep cheese is considered by some to be even healthier. And just in case you are wondering – sheep cheese tastes creamy, rich and flavourful but not at all strange.

An ingredient found in cheese milk has been proven to lower cholesterol. It has high levels of mono and polyunsaturated fat (so-called ‘healthy fats’) and is also high in minerals like calcium and zinc.

Also, most people who are allergic to ‘dairy’ products can actually have sheep milk and cheese with no problems.

While sheep do not produce high volumes of milk (one to two litres per day per ewe averaged over seven months) their milk has a high content of solids and yields almost double the percentage of cheese compared with cow or goat milk.

Up to 15 cheeses are available for tasting. My favourite is the White Pearl, a fresh curd cheese marinated in olive oil and lemon thyme, closely followed by the Friesland Fog, an organic fresh curd cheese with a layer of ash through the middle and a white mould around it. They also make pecorino and a fantastic blue cheese. Grandvewe’s pinot paste makes a delicious accompaniment. Other products include yoghurt, ice cream and wine.

If you love the cheese but can’t cart it around on holiday with you, Grandvewe will express post cheese to you in a special Styrofoam box with chemical ice bricks to keep it cool. We have successfully sent it to friends and family interstate as a gift.

You’ll find Grandvewe at Birchs Bay, just south of Woodbridge. It’s about 35 minutes drive from Hobart or 20 minutes east of Cygnet.

For more information, check out  www.grandvewe.com.au

Susan Moore lives in Tasmania’s Huon Valley. She shares a glimpse of daily life in Tasmania, as written by a “blow in” from the mainland, on her fascinating site Houn View. Don’t forget to subscribe to receive her regular articles.
Image: via Grandvewe Cheese Facebook page

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