Mountainoak Farmstead Aged Gouda
Mountainoak Cheese Ltd. is a relatively new kid on the block. Adam and Hannie van Bergeijk launched the company in the summer of 2012. But they aren't new to cheesemaking. The couple have been interested in cheesemaking since taking over the family farm back in Holland back in 1976. In 1981, Adam headed off to cheesemaking school in Gouda, Holland, and went on to become an award-winning cheesemaker and a cheesemaking instructor. In 1996, the couple sold their dairy operation in Holland, moved their family to Canada, and purchased a farm just outside of New Hamburg. By the summer of 2012, son Arjo and his wife Baujke had taken over the farm's dairy operation, freeing up Adam and Hannie to pursue cheesemaking once again. Son John and his wife Angela now operate a dairy operation on a nearby farm. All of the milk used to make Mountainoak cheese comes from the family farm. This particular cheese has been aged about nine months.
Appearance of rind:
Breathable yellow film coating (that is painted on by hand).
Appearance of paste:
Pale yellow. Paste has small mechanical holes.
Mild intensity. Fruity and floral notes
Sweet, fruity start, followed by cooked milk and toasty notes; slightly acidic nip on the finish. Gentle caramel notes closer to the rind. Although a gouda, the taste of this cheese is reminiscent of a pleasant cheddar. Our piece was about nine months old. It will be interesting to revisit this cheese again at two years of age to see how the flavour has evolved.
Semi-firm; somewhat creamy in the centre, a little drier closer to the rind.
Mountainoak's on-site store is open Friday and Saturday. We dropped by on a Saturday afternoon, had a pleasant chat with Adam, and sampled a number of Mountainoak cheeses.