Like A Cheesemaker in Hunter Valley Cheese Factory

welcome to the hunter valley cheese co | camera Sony NEX-7 – It could have been just any other ordinary Tuesday on the road. Instead it morphed into a day of luxury in one of the best cities in the world.

The Hunter Valley Cheese Co. is a purpose built cheese factory, maturation and tasting room which commenced production in 1995 to fulfil the tourism desire for regional produce complimenting the already vibrant winemaking and fine food tourism.

Blessed are the CHEESEMAKERS! By treating the milk, cheese curd or maturation of the cheese differently they can produse a wide range of cheese flavours and textures, thus becoming different cheese styles.

So, here are the four basic steps to make cheese from milk. Technological advancements through time have enhanced both the hygiene practises and the cheesemaking techniques of the modern Cheesemaker.

Firstly, milk is warmed, starter cultures are added (there is a huge variety of starter cultures available to the Cheesemaker, and a different style of starter culture is used for each style of cheese). Starter cultures when added to milk immediately turn the milk sugar, lactose into lactic acid.

Secondly, rennet is added to coagulate the milk.

the modern cheesemaking room | camera Sony NEX-7

Thirdly, when the milk has coagulated the curd is ‘cut’ into even cubes both horizontally and vertically. Here, the milk solids and liquids separate giving us curds (the solids) and whey (the liquid). The cheese curd is ‘stirred’ to further separate the curds from the whey. By agitating or strring the curds more frequently more whey is expelled from the curds and a drier cheese is achieved. Once the whey has been expelled sufficiently from the curds, the curds are ready for draining.

Fourthly, the cheese curd is then placed into cheese hoops for further draining. The size and shape of these hoops depend solely on the style of cheese being made. The cheese in its ‘hoop’ is regularly ‘turned’ to allow moisture to be released evenly and thoroughly from the new cheese. The exception being fresh cheeses, which are placed directly into cheesecloth or hoops for draining after a longer coagulation period.

Following the ‘cheesemake’ a brining/dry salt of the cheese is carried out. The Cheesemaker then ‘matures’ and cares for cheese under temperature controlled conditions until full flavour and texture development has been achieved.

hunter valley cheese classifications | camera Sony NEX-7

There’s no secret to cheese. The ingredients are simple and everyone knows them. The flavor comes from the hands of the cheesemaker.

Aaah I love Hunter Valley. A big thank you to Destination NSW and Garuda Indonesia. It was a simple and easy vacation, but we all had a fantastic time!

Happy Sustainable Travels!

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