Explore the World of Cheese one subject at a time.

Discover the rich tapestry of cheese culture with our content zones! Delve into the nuances of cheese buying, presenting, and serving. Explore the intricacies of cheese tasting, milk production, and cheesemaking. Unravel the red tape of regulation and good practice. Learn about maturing, grading, and iconic cheeses. Immerse yourself in the language of cheese!

Choose your cheese subjects

Our mission is to inspire and educate individuals from all backgrounds, whether they are cheese enthusiasts or industry professionals, about the world of cheese. We believe that the more people understand and appreciate cheese, the better they will be able to enjoy and savour the rich diversity of flavours, textures, and traditions that it offers. Choose a subject to get started.

Cheese making curds

Milk Production & Cheesemaking

One of the core fundamentals of cheese education is an understanding of milk production and cheesemaking. At its core, cheese is an art form born from the raw materials of milk and the intricate processes that transform it into a myriad of delightful varieties.

Central to the craft of cheesemaking are the key ingredients that contribute to the unique flavours, textures, and aromas of each cheese. The primary ingredient, milk, serves as the canvas upon which cheesemakers craft their masterpieces. Different types of milk, from cow and goat to sheep and buffalo, impart distinct characteristics to the final product. Additives such as rennet, cultures, and salt play crucial roles, guiding the fermentation and curdling processes that shape the cheese’s identity.


Maturing, Affinage, and Grading

Delve into the realms of maturing, affinage, and grading, crucial aspects that contribute to the diversity and quality of cheeses across the globe.

An essential skill in the cheese connoisseur’s toolkit is the ability to discern the degree of ripeness and flavour in their cheeses, which undergo transformative changes as they mature. Understanding the subtle shifts in texture, flavour, and aroma allows cheese enthusiasts to savour these varieties at their peak. The skilled affineur will need to use their finely-tuned senses (alongside a grading iron) to ascertain the cheese’s stage of maturity and make decisions as to whether the cheese is ready for market, or if it has the “legs” to be aged for longer and further on the flavour-scale.

maturing racks
Boxes of Cheese

Cheese Buying and Distribution

Explore the intricacies of how cheeses are bought, transported, and eventually find their way onto the tables of eager consumers. This aspect of the journey involves a nuanced understanding of the supply chain, emphasising the delicate dance of maintaining quality and freshness from producer to consumer.

The journey of cheese from production to consumption involves careful consideration of logistics and temperature control, often referred to as the “chill chain.” This term encapsulates the entire process of purchasing and transporting cheese in a way that preserves its freshness and quality. Maintaining a controlled temperature throughout the chain is crucial to prevent deterioration of flavours and textures. Understanding this process is vital for both buyers and sellers, ensuring that the end consumer receives cheese in optimal condition, reflecting the craftsmanship of its origin.


Presenting and Serving:

Elevate the cheese experience from mere consumption to a sensory journey. This zone encompasses the selection of packaging, the delicate process of cutting using appropriate tools, and the overarching importance of caring for, cutting, and serving cheeses tailored to their respective varieties.

The journey of a cheese doesn’t conclude at the point of sale; rather, it extends to the moment it reaches the consumer’s table. Understanding how to preserve the integrity of the cheese, and contribute to its aesthetic appeal,  whilst maximising profitability is a crucial aspect of cheese education. Whether it’s the smooth precision of a cheese wire, the protective embrace of cheese paper, or the vacuum-sealed perfection of modern packaging, each method serves a specific purpose in maintaining freshness and preventing flavour contamination.

maturing racks

Cheese Language & Communication

Effective communication is a paramount skill in conveying the nuances and characteristics of this diverse culinary delight. This involves a comprehensive understanding of key descriptors, ranging from the cheese’s origin and milking animal to its processing methods and age. Additionally, mastering the art of pairing cheese with complementary beverages adds an extra layer of sophistication to the overall cheese appreciation experience.

A well-rounded cheese education involves a deep dive into the key descriptors that define each cheese’s identity. These descriptors include the cheese’s country of origin, the species of the milking animal, the use of vegetarian or animal rennet, the milk’s processing method (raw or pasteurised), adherence to the Make/Post-Make (MPM) Model, protected status, and age. Each of these factors contributes to the unique flavor profile and characteristics of a cheese, and understanding them allows enthusiasts to articulate and appreciate the intricacies of different varieties.


Cheese Industry Knowledge

Gaining insight into the cheese industry’s history, production methods, and nutritional aspects becomes crucial for a comprehensive understanding of this revered culinary craft.

It encompasses a comprehensive exploration of cheese, covering its historical origins, including the first cheese-making methods and the region where it originated. The module delves into the nutritional aspects of cheese, highlighting its benefits as a valuable source of energy, fat, protein, and minerals such as calcium. Additionally, it distinguishes between large-scale and artisanal production, considering factors like scale, target market, and pricing. Overall, learners will gain a well-rounded understanding of the history, nutritional value, and production dynamics within the cheese industry.

maturing racks
Cheese safety checks

Regulation and Good Practice

Adhering to regulatory standards and implementing best practices is fundamental to ensuring the safety, quality, and enjoyment of this beloved dairy product. This involves mastering hygiene protocols, safe cheese handling, and discerning the distinctions between labeling terms.

Understanding how to handle cheese safely is crucial for both industry professionals and consumers. From the production floor to the cheese counter and kitchen, minimising the risk of cross-contamination, proper storage, and temperature control are key aspects of safe cheese handling. Ensuring that cutting tools and surfaces are clean, implementing proper storage conditions, and adhering to recommended handling procedures contribute to maintaining the integrity of the cheese and safeguarding against foodborne illnesses.


Cheese Tasting

Tasting cheese is a sensory journey that combines art and science, requiring a systematic approach to fully appreciate and evaluate the myriad flavours and textures. As part of our cheese education, delegates learn to utilise structured tasting models, such as the Academy of Cheese Level 1 Structured Approach to Tasting Model, to enhance their ability to discern and articulate the nuances of different cheeses.

The Academy of Cheese Level 1 Structured Approach to Tasting Model provides a comprehensive framework for evaluating cheeses. It involves a step-by-step process that engages multiple senses, helping tasters systematically analyse various aspects of the cheese. This model typically includes visual examination, assessing the appearance of the cheese; olfactory evaluation, where aromas are detected; and gustatory analysis, which involves tasting the cheese to discern its flavours, textures, and overall balance.

Cheese,Tasting in a Shop
Cheese safety checks

Iconic Cheeses

The Cheese Library is a treasure trove of award-winning, iconic, traditional, and protected cheeses that together form a rich tapestry of global cheese heritage. Delving into this extensive collection offers enthusiasts and professionals alike a journey through the diverse and nuanced world of cheese craftsmanship.

Within the Cheese Library, award-winning cheeses take centre stage, showcasing the pinnacle of excellence in cheese production. These cheeses have garnered recognition for their exceptional qualities, whether for their flavour complexity, unique textures, or respect to traditional recipes. Exploring award-winners provides a glimpse into the cutting edge of cheese innovation and the standards that define excellence in the industry.