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Meet the producer: Westcombe Dairy

Meet the producer: Westcombe Dairy


By Rachael Kinsella
08, March 2021

Westcombe Dairy in East Somerset craft the finest traditional West Country Cheese, everything they do on their farm revolves around the quality of their fresh raw milk, from the wellbeing of their cows to working in harmony with their land. 

Records show that unpasteurised cheese was being made at Westcombe Dairy as far back as the 1890s, however it wasn’t until Tom Calver joined his father Richard at Westcombe, that they begun to make cheese in the traditional way. As a trained chef Tom brought with him the experience at some of London’s top eateries as well as an apprenticeship at the artisanal cheesemonger Neal’s Yard Dairy. Tom set about learning about the microbial diversity of the farm and its milk, the quality and flavour of the milk became the main focus and he also adopted a more regenerative style of agricultural which naturally produces a better result.

Westcombe Dairy

The unique environment of the land at Westcombe Dairy - lush herbal lays, plentiful spring water, rolling hills and coll mist results in an exceptional dairy herd that is producing milk that is full of vitality, richness and 'friendly' bacteria.

When the milk arrives in the Cheese Dairy, the small team of cheesemakers use only traditional starter cultures and natural rennets to begin the milks transformation into cheese, they pay particular attention to how their microbial active milk behaves as the character of the milk is unique every single day. The team don't believe in forcing a particular flavour or finish onto a cheese and  allow the milk to lead the way and determine its own character in the finished product, this results in cheese that is a true expression of the milk from which it came.

Westcombe Dairy

Nothing is wasted from the cheesemaking process, the by-product whey is used to make Ricotta and also to feed and fatten their Tamworth pigs which are bred to make charcuterie.

Westcombe wholeheartedly follows the concept that cheesemaking is a process that starts on the farm and ends on a plate which is completely in keeping with our ethos. Westcombe has created a circular economy of pig farming, dairy farming and cheesemaking resulting in production of glorious cheese and charcuterie. Their products are not only a pleasure to eat but honest and reflective of the countryside and farm.
       

 

You can follow Westcombe Dairy at @westcombedairy.                                         
You can buy their Clothbound Raw Milk Cheddar here.     

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