Bangalow cheese takes gold
BANGALOW Cheese has won one of the biggest prizes available to Australian cheesemakers, bringing the Northern Rivers a big step closer to being recognised as the gourmet capital of regional NSW.
Bangalow Cheese Co has, for the second time, won the Champion Fancy Cheese crown, along with a swag of other awards, at this week's Sydney Royal Cheese and Dairy Produce Show.
Based in Bangalow, Justin Telfer names his cheeses after villages in the region.
His Nashua Washed Rind won the Champion Fancy Cheese, beating off other gold award winners to take out the coveted title at the Sydney show.
The three silver medals were for his Brooklet Brie, Federal Fetta and Newrybar semi-hard cheeses.
"It's amazing to get these awards, competing against up to a thousand other entries," Mr Telfer said.
As demand for the company's cheeses has increased since it was founded five years ago, Mr Telfer has doubled capacity and continues to source his milk locally from a mixed herd of Friesian, Guernsey, Jersey and Brown Swiss cows.
"I'm at the point where I can expand further if I want to," Mr Telfer told The Northern Star.
"There's a continual demand for more cheese than I can supply, so I'm considering ramping up.
Apart from the pasteurising of the milk, absolutely every part of the cheese-making process at Bangalow Cheese Company is done by hand, including the creation of packaging and labels.
Well known at the Bangalow and Byron Bay Farmers' Markets, Mr Telfer now sends his smorgasbord of cheeses in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane.
Passionate about the local food industry, he is also on the steering committee of Northern Rivers Food, an organisation that supports local producers and promotes the Northern Rivers brand in the national and international marketplace.