Cheese judging is a strange process: a bunch of people in white coats silently chewing cheese, then spitting it out (yup – like wine judging*) and then awarding points and hopefully – medals.
After awarding Nashua washed rind cheese a Gold Medal at the 2012 Sydney Royal Cheese & Dairy Produce Show, I travelled to the lush, green Byron Bay hinterland in northern New South Wales to visit cheese-maker Justin Telfer at Bangalow Cheese Co. and find out just what it takes to make an award-winning cheese.
Update 2014: Bangalow Cheese Co. has since changed owners and is now called Byron Bay Cheese Co. Visit The Farm, Byron Bay for more information.
* It sounds like a waste, but cheese must be spat out after tasting during competitions. This helps judges keep their taste buds in peak condition during the day, rather than getting too full of cheese and just wanting to go off for a nap.