Zoë and I had a day off today. There was no purpose or intention in our minds when we applied for annual leave, only the fact that the day was going to be preceded by a weekend in Essex and we had spare leave to take before the end of the financial year. Having had a lie-in, played a bit of FIFA on the PS3 and gone into town to get some practicalities done, we decided [as it was a nice day] to have a drive around the country lanes of Hampshire and ended up stopping at the Newlyn’s Farm Shop. I knew there wasn’t much chance of me leaving the place without going through their locally produced cheeses, so I grabbed a basket.
Much like an army doctor moving along a line of new recruits, cupping them and asking them to cough, I side-stepped up the aisle feeling the weight and consistency. I dare say that I examined the cheeses a little closer than servicemen’s’ undercarriages are subject to, looking at the rinds and veins (don’t!) and finally settled on a couple to add to my other wise empty basket.
And oh my word did I pick a winner! Quite literally! The Cornish Blue, I have since found out, is the winner of numerous awards, including the prestigious and sought after ‘World Champion Cheese’ at the World Cheese Awards in 2010. After I slid the knife smoothly through the wedge that I brought home with me and dropped it into my mouth, my first thought was “Boom. This is a champion”. When you think of Cornish ice-cream or Cornish cream teas you are reminded of luscious foods that are rich and creamy, produced by big, fat, healthy farm animals that chomp on fresh grass from the rolling hills. Cows so rotund, that as Maude the Jersey Cow saunters past lazily, the other girls sing to her in Black Eyed Peas style “Hey M! Whatcha gonna do with all that ass? All that ass inside that trunk?”
This cheese is no exception to those other wonderful Cornish flavours. It has a full flavour and - as is said of wine – lots of ‘body’. It is creamy and moist in texture, not to the same extent as Gorgonzola, but in the same manner. Unlike other blues, its veins are not distributed universally / evenly throughout the cheese but gathered together in lines and areas. It has a lovely brown rind and a tangy aftertaste that compliments the creamy flavour. Yep, I’ve decided, I’m giving this a 9. I may regret my loose high-scoring here…but I doubt it. It’s bloody awesome. And I tell you what, I may not have been able to celebrate the English winning the World Cup recently or that the Brits will win the most gold medals this summer, but by-golly-gosh this is one world beater worth celebrating and being proud of!