Wensleydale

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We’ve gathered our favourite Wensleydales from the factory. They all come from North Yorkshire! Hawes to be precise, down some rainy country lanes, which is the only place allowed to call their cheese Wensleydale. 

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Special Reserve Yorkshire Wensleydale

We paid: £1.14 per 100g

Brief description: A mature Wensleydale

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Smell: ‘It smells like a milky baby’ – Isobel Watson, 2016. I don’t know what babies she’s been smelling, but it doesn’t smell very mature (it’s been ageing for just over a month –  Elle suggested ‘month-old milk’ for the brief description…). It’s not particularly pungent but if you stick your nose right up close then it smells pretty classic (for our English readers at least), with a slightly acidic, sour note. It hasn’t got as much bass as Meghan Trainor, but it’s certainly not displeasing!

Taste: As with the smell, it’s tangy and sharp (like our wit) and slightly sour smelling (like our new PR Manager, Elle). It tickles all the same citrusy taste buds as a ripe pamplemousse.

Texture: Oh crumbs! Unlike Yorkshire this one is very dry, but this is still a cracking cheese, Gromit. Quite literally. It crumbles as soon as it catches sight of the cheese knife.

Strength: A mild but flavoursome, 4/10.

incredibriecheesy

Wensleydale with Cranberries

Brief description: Cranberries, with a bit of cheese.

We paid: £1.24 per 100g

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incredibly cheesy incredibly cheesy incrediblydSmell: Izzy is talking about sweet cows rolling in the DSC06564grass. Izzy is also two beers down. It smells of exactly what you’d expect; sweet fruit and cheese. Nothing to smell here. Next.

Texture: On a scale of the Dales to a dry stone wall, this is about as dry as a dry stone wall that got rained on. So a wet stone wall. It’s denser than a wet sheep (or at least, denser than the Special Reserve). Elle says ‘less dense than Ellen’. 1-1. The creamier texture seems to come from the addition of fruit, and it also has a slightly grainy quality.

Taste: The first taste is the grate-est, baby I know. It’s a novelty if you haven’t had it before (but then again, which Christmas cheese selection doesn’t include it?). The sweet cranberries definitely marry well with the sharper taste of the cheese, but our initial enjoyment was as ephemeral as a sunset. It’s a young cheese, and not very moreish.

Strength: 5/10, mainly because of the cranberries.

incredibly cheesy

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incredibly cheesy

Sheep Wensleydale

Brief description: Baaaaa.

We paid: £1.79 per 100g

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incredibrie cheese

Texture: This cheese doesn’t have the classic Wensleydale crumble, but that’s not a baaad thing. It’s quite solid, and almost a hard cheese (Comté-esque).

Smell: Izzy is addicted to the smell. Elle says it smells like a rusty ram, but we all like it. For Ellen, its slightly reminiscent of babybell or cheesestrings. Childhood. Baaa.

Taste: Very scrummy, it’s clearly a sheep cheese, and is quite mild and milky. This one is far more moreish than the others and has a nutty, woody edge. This is the only one we ate all of.  Shaun would be proud. Baaa.

Strength: Very mild, a 3/10 but very edible. Baa-utiful.

incredibrie cheesy

incredibrie cheesy

Bishopdale

Brief description: A tangy, cheddar-like, dense cheese.

We paid: £1.26 per 100g

 

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wensleydale cheese

Smell: Like a mature Cheddar, but slightly sharper.

Texture: It’s a really thick cheese, with an almost play-dough like texture. Just like we saw with Farmhouse Mulder, there are small crunchy morsels throughout the cheese which is rather pleasant. A little bit like popping candy without the fizz.

Taste: As with the smell, it tastes incredibly similar to Cheddar. A good Cheddar, but Cheddar nonetheless. It’s not so mild; it’s tantalisingly tangy, fruity fresh and shuper sharp.

Strength: 6/10

wensleydale cheese tasting

wensleydale cheese tasting

wensleydale cheese tasting

 

Final Verdict!!!

There were so many to choose from; we only sampled a few flavours so we don’t want to tar all Wensleydales with the same brush. That said, the cranberries were interesting, but too overpowering for it to top our list. Although Wensleydale wasn’t our favourite, the sheep’s milk Wensleydale was really yummy and has earned a place on our metaphorical cheeseboard. Plus, our visit to the Wensleydale Creamery was A Grand Day Out which we would thoroughly recommend. Without further ado, here’s our official Wensleydale Leaderboard:

1. Sheep Wensleydale – 7/10

2. Special Reserve Wensleydale – 5/10

3. Bishopdale – 5/10

4. Wensleydale with Cranberries – 4.5/10

 

 

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5 thoughts on “Wensleydale

  1. Carolyn

    Cracking post, girls.
    I think a cheese tasting trip to Borough Market should be on your Easter hols itinerary

    1. Izzy Watson

      Thank you!I think it definitely should be!

  2. Nice one guys, this is quickly becoming my favourite blog of all time! Keep up the good work.

    Lots of love,

    Chris x

  3. Billy Goat Gruff

    Ha. Sheep! They know nothing!

  4. Mum

    I’m sure your blogs are getting cheesier! The pictures as always are brilliant though, makes me want to take a bite out of my ipad. The goaty one sounds good you could bring some of that home.

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