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Wensleydale
Photo Credit: Neal's Yard Dairy

Wensleydale

Wensleydale is an historic fresh, mild cheese that has been made in Wensleydale, North Yorkshire since 1150 by Cistercian monks. These monks continued to make the cheese until the dissolution of their monasteries in 1540. Traditionally, sheep's milk was used, but over the time cow's milk was also used. The art of making the cheese was passed by the monks to the farmer's wives who produced a blue variety of Wensleydale at their farmhouses. Today, Wensleydale is produced mainly from pasteurised cow's milk with sheep's milk added to enhance the flavour. Wensleydale Creamery in the town of Hawes is seeking to protect the name Yorkshire Wensleydale Cheese under PDO designation. But there are other producers of Wenslydale cheese in parts of the UK, mainly in Shropshire and Cheshire.

Wensleydale Creamery produces five types of Wensleydale cheese depending upon age and flavours - Real Yorkshire Wensleydale, Mature Wensleydale, Extra Mature Wensleydale, Blue Wensleydale and Oak Smoked Wensleydale.

A Real Yorkshire Wensleydale is creamy-white in colour has a supple, crumbly, moist and flaky texture. It appears similar to a young Caerphilly. The flavour is mild, clean, and slightly sweet with hints of wild honey savor and fresh acidity. As it ages the cheese develops a fuller, deeper flavour as well becomes firmer. Yorkshire Wensleydale cheese produced by Wensleydale Creamery is available in truckles / cylinders or block shaped in varying shapes and sizes up to 25kg.

Wensleydale goes well with fruit cake, apple and is a perfect accompaniment during lunchtime or tea time. It also tastes delicious with hot desserts like fruit pies and crumbles. It is the king of cheeseboard where its fresh, milky sweetness and robust flavours rule the roost.

Varieties:

Oak Smoked Wensleydale is produced by naturally smoking the cheese for 18 hours using oak chips, to create a subtle, smoked flavour. It is the same as Real Yorkshire Wensleydale except for the striking golden beech colour and the robust flavour imparted by the smokiness.

Mature Wensleydale is a harder, flavoured variant of Wensleydale.

Extra Mature Wensleydale is the strongest Wensleydale aged for nine months.

Blue Wensleydale is a blue-veined cheese that has been the Supreme Champion winner at the British Cheese Awards 2012.

Unpasturized Wensleydale handcrafted from a single dairy herd is also available. It has a complex lemony flavour with a buttery and creamy texture.

Blended Wensleydale flavoured with delicate fruits like cranberries, apricots, pineapples, ginger, garlic and chives is one of the favorites buys at the creamery.

Wensleydale cheeses complement fruity white wine such as Pinot Grigio.

  • Made from pasteurized or unpasteurized cow's and sheep's milk
  • Country of origin: United Kingdom
  • Region: Hawes, North Yorkshire
  • Type: hard, artisan, blue-veined
  • Fat content: 48%
  • Texture: crumbly, open and supple
  • Rind: cloth wrapped
  • Colour: pale yellow
  • Flavour: acidic, buttery, mild, salty, sweet
  • Aroma: fresh, smokey
  • Vegetarian: no
  • Producers: Neal's Yard Dairy, Wensleydale Creamery
  • Synonyms: Real Yorkshire Wensleydale, Unpasturized Wensleydale, Blended Wensleydale , Hawes Wensleydale

Other cheeses from United Kingdom:

Top photos from Twitter

Jan 29
Wensleydale & Sticky Toffee Cheese. @Nicolethebear you absolute star!! Gonna put it all in my head pic.twitter.com/HWUgfftLTU
Jan 29
Wensleydale Cheese is made with unpasteurized milk to bring a richer, more complex taste to the finished product. pic.twitter.com/wRveDzSKZK
Jan 25
Cheese on toast time. Including the appearance of a chocolate and orange Wensleydale. Much excite pic.twitter.com/bbWKdc9zVd
Jan 20
NEW CHEESE! Wensleydale with Apricot, Orange & Amaretto. It's pretty tasty! Available from The Hollies, Delicatessen. pic.twitter.com/3H9C1gfEYG
Jan 18
Experimented with #gf bread today. What better to dunk it into than our Tomato & Wensleydale Cheese Soup #huginacup pic.twitter.com/uU0ZWr9NUo
Jan 11
Leftover cheese from Christmas? I've made a Carrot and Wensleydale soup. #LK pic.twitter.com/kZLPXa9rT7
Jan 11
Right I love cheese but WTF why spoil a good Wensleydale pic.twitter.com/QQiElLmvDg
Jan 10
Yes @BroadwayUK its pancakes (gallettes) with eggs and Wensleydale cheese thanks @BroadwayDeliUk pic.twitter.com/STICygzgAv
Jan 09
Fab salad for lunch! Mixed salad leaves, avocado, quinoa, blueberries & crumbled Wensleydale cheese with cranberries. pic.twitter.com/KapejB7lcj
Jan 04
Christmas tree & decorations are down .. Time for a cuppa & more Christmas cake with Wensleydale cheese! 😋 pic.twitter.com/pVkNm2XvqM
Jan 02
To open these or not to open these, spots Wensleydale cheese & cheese wafers.. briskly opens. pic.twitter.com/DTyfIeh9hs
Dec 31, 2014
NYE trip to the #wensleydale cheese factory. Cant wait to dive into this tomorrow! pic.twitter.com/MneZTONqle
Dec 30, 2014
Bit of late night Wensleydale cheese and Christmas cake to finish the evening. @Wdalecreamery pic.twitter.com/tq6vXn7I5d
Dec 30, 2014
What was your favourite #cheese on your festive cheeseboard? We're big fans of Wensleydale with cranberries! pic.twitter.com/Cz6szYUfnw
Dec 29, 2014
Cream cheese triangles and Jelly Tots are a fine substitute for Wensleydale and Cranberry. pic.twitter.com/cCQQEGO2P4
 
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