Nottinghamshire Cheesemaker Triumphs at Melton Artisan Cheese Fair

Colston Bassett Dairy enjoyed a particularly successful Bank Holiday weekend, collecting the Best Stilton Cheese Award during the region’s annual Artisan Cheese Fair.

Taking place on the 29th and 30th April, Melton Mowbray hosted the UK’s largest dedicated artisan cheese fair with over 500 cheeses entered into the awards. The two day event featured a programme of talks, tastings and demonstrations.

This is the second year that the Artisan Cheese Fair has held sponsored awards for various categories of cheese. Entry into the majority of awards is restricted by a limit of 250 tonnes production which means that only two of the six Blue Stilton producers are able to enter. However, the dedicated Best Stilton Cheese trophy is open to Stilton producers regardless of size.
Billy Kevan, Dairy Manager at Colston Bassett Dairy, comments: “Melton Mowbray is a close neighbour as its only 12.5 miles down the road. Therefore, it’s great to be able to support a local artisan cheese fair. Stilton with its PDO status is clearly and important asset to the region, so I’m thrilled that we’ve been selected as the winner of this award.”

Colston Bassett Dairy was established in 1913, when the local village doctor, Dr William Windley, suggested that the local community set up a co-operative to make cheese. This co-operative still operates under the same rules today, with milk now supplied from four local farms, all located within a 1.5-mile radius of the Dairy in the Vale of Belvoir.

Throughout its 103 year history, Colston Bassett Dairy has maintained traditional cheesemaking methods – to ensure exceptional quality and consistency is achieved. It is a delicate, labour intensive process but the excellent flavour of Colston Bassett is clear proof of the intuition and care that goes into cheesemaking at the dairy.

Colston Bassett Dairy’s Chairman, John Wallwin collected the award on Saturday night.