In addition to Westcombe Cheddar, Duckett's Aged Caerphilly and our Somerset Ricotta, we also make a number of other cheeses here at Westcombe. Our
full range includes a Red Leicester-style cheese made with our unpasteurised milk, to various smoked, herbed and pasteurised variations of our core cheeses.
Made from the same raw milk as our Cheddar and Caerphilly cheeses, Westcombe Red is our take on a traditional Red Leicester. We started making this in the early 2000s, after a visit from food writer and cheese expert Sarah Freeman. Sarah was lamenting the absence of any traditional Red Leicester at that time and challenged us to bring this cheese back from extinction. Well, we couldn’t resist a challenge!
Falling somewhere between our complex Traditional Cheddar and more delicate Aged Caerphilly, Westcombe Red is a mellow but characterful semi-hard cheese with a smooth, somewhat crumbly texture. Made in traditional cloth-bound ten kilo wheels and aged for around five months, Westcombe Red boasts a good depth of flavour with lasting notes of roasted nut and fresh summer grass.
Since we started making Westcombe Red, we are pleased to see that traditional Red Leicester is once again being made in its home county by Sparkenhoe Farm. It’s good to know Westcombe Red isn’t alone in flying the flag for artisan red cheese!
While we strive for perfection in our Unpasteurised Cheddar, we’re not averse to making variations now and then to spice things up. Brickellwood is the smoked version of our award-winning Cheddar, which is made by smoking smaller, two kilo rounds over smoldering cherrywood for 12 hours.
The result is a richly aromatic, russet-hued cheese with a deep smoky flavour. While some of the subtleties of the Cheddar are masked by the smoking, there is an intriguing interplay of tangy and woody flavours that creates a very satisfying effect.
Brickellwood makes an interesting addition to the cheeseboard, but we always find it comes most alive in the kitchen, adding a smoky depth and richness to all sorts of dishes and snacks.
Just as we adopted our Aged Caerphilly from the Duckett family, so we inherited this variation on it. Inspired by the Caerphilly’s fresh lactic tang, the Duckett’s added chopped chives to complement the cheese’s flavour. We continue this tradition today, using pasteurised milk to make the cheese and scattering chives through the centre of each round.
Wedmore is a cheese that really captures the flavours of the lush Somerset countryside. Balancing the zesty dairy flavours of Caerphilly with the delicate oniony sweetness of chives, this cheese is a real summer delight. Perfect for picnics, packed lunches and especially good grilled on toast or over vegetable gratins.
In addition to Wedmore, we also make Smoked Wedmore by smoking whole Wedmore rounds over cherrywood for 12 hours. Because of the size of the rounds, the smoke doesn’t permeate too deeply into the cheese – leaving the zesty and oniony flavours intact – but it adds a lovely bonfire-like fragrance to the softer area under the rind which is absolutely delicious.
DUCKETT'S PASTEURISED CAERPHILLY
In addition to Duckett’s Aged Caerphilly, we also make a gentler, pasteurised version called Duckett’s Pasteurised Caerphilly. Light, moist and ever so crumbly, this cheese is best enjoyed while young and still full of zesty flavours.
This cheese is also the base for the Tornegus washed-rind and herb-marinated cheese made by Pat Robinson.
Tornegus dates back to the 1980s, when the late James Aldridge, one of the leaders of the British artisan cheese revival at that time, started making a variation on Chris Duckett's Caerphilly.
Re-washing the Caerphillies in wine, James then sprinkled them with Egyptian mint and lemon verbena herbs, creating a spicy, fruity, semi-soft cheese with a lovely silky texture.
*Please note, Tornegus isn't a Westcombe cheese and isn't produced at our dairy.