14th July 2018
Things here in sunny Pangbourne have been as hectic as ever!
It's the end of a school term and so we've been busy creating bespoke gifts for some lucky teachers. These have ranged from a mini waxed cheese on a cheeseboard to a hamper full of goodies. When I worked in schools in the dim and distant past I never received anything as tasty! We also make up picnics for customers and this is the definite time of year for them to come into their own. They are always popular at school sports days as well as days out at Henley or Ascot!
We've also recently had a bit of a change in our staffing structure with Jan taking on more regular hours and Chris doubling her days to work Fridays as well as Saturdays. It's meant that I'm in less often on a Saturday but that has allowed me to get out and do more village fairs and other events outside of the shop. We've been trying really hard to get the shop more well known locally as well as further afield and going to shows really helps. I just love talking to people about cheese and so am always happy to witter on about it!
We have just come back from a week in Devon. Ali and I loaded up our trusty Defender with kids, dogs & walking shoes and headed to East Devon. We had a great time walking along the coast path as well as a couple of hikes inland. The dogs were suitably worn out each evening whilst the kids kept Ali and I in shape. As ever, I can't go anywhere without heading to visit a cheesemaker so I dragged everyone to visit Home Farm, it is here that the Quickes family have been making award-winning cheddar for generations. We don't stock the Quickes Cheddar - it's a matter of room in our counter - but their vintage is one of my favourites. We do have their cheddar truckles available with a few days notice and these are 1.8kg of deliciousness! Mary Quicke is one of the board members at the Academy of Cheese and has been instrumental in championing cheese as a credible, exciting and respected profession. Whenever I tell people that I am a cheesemonger I always get some blank looks but once I explain what I do people are always fascinated. Cheese is such an amazing product - it blows my mind that the same base element of milk can be nurtured and moulded into so many different amazing tastes. It is truly a thing of beauty!