Is there no stopping the Courtyard Dairy, the magnificent cheese shop just outside Settle? We’ve written about their opening and their Best New Cheese Retailer Award at the British Cheese Awards. Now they have wiped the board with ‘Best Cheese Counter’ and ‘Cheesemonger of the Year’ awards at the BBC Good Food Show.
So what better place for your Christmas cheese, (and they are offering Squidbeak readers 10% off) than here, but you need to know why these guys are so good.
First of all Andy Swinscoe is an affineur which means he’s forgotten more about cheese than most of ever knew and is a specialist at ageing cheese, knowing just how to store, turn, mature and sample the cheeses in his care. They get so much love it’s no wonder they taste terrific.
He learned all this stuff while working for some of the biggest names in cheese: Paxton and Whitfield in London and Hervé Mons in France – probably the world’s top affineur – before opening in Settle, at Bath’s Fine Cheese Company.
So what to buy for Christmas? If you want a Yorkshire cheese then try Dale End Cheddar from Botton Village Creamery on the North York Moors. We’ve always loved Mrs Kirkham’s Lancashire, and Andy stocks the slower maturing 20kg rounds. Vacherin Mont d’Or is a beautiful soft gooey cheese packed in spruce bark boxes and only available in winter so a truly special seasonal cheese.
Also on my Christmas list will be: Cote Hill Blue from Lincolnshire; the beautifully crumpled Langres; some salami from Greve in Chianti where I long ago had a holiday; a link or two of Three Little Pigs Yorkshire chorizo; Arran oatcakes; and Elspeth Biltoft’s lovely Rosebud Preserves from the Dales. But you don’t need us to tell you, just browse their website and you’ll be bowled over not only by their knowledge of fine cheese, but their selection.
Go in person if you can for the full Swinscoe experience, failing that order online before the end of December and get a Squidbeak discount.
They’re offering Squidbeak reader’s 10% off the first online order made before 31st December. Just use the code SQUID on checkout and you will have yourself some very fine cheeses with a not to be sniffed at discount.
The Courtyard Dairy, The Courtyard, Cleatop, A65, Settle, North Yorkshire, BD24 9JY
Telephone: 01729 892 902
Email: [email protected]
Mon – Sat: 9.30 – 17.30
Sun: 10.30 – 16.30