Devon’s cheese firm Quickes success at World Cheese Awards
One of Devon’s leading traditional clothbound Cheddar producer, Quickes, has bagged three gold medals for their Mature, Extra Mature and Vintage Cheddars.
The latest achievements followed an intensive day’s judging that took place at Olympia London alongside 2014’s Good Food Show. There were more than 2,700 entries from all around the globe including cheese from Brazil and New Zealand. A panel of almost 250 cheese experts took part in the process of grading the cheeses and awarding medals accordingly.
2014 has proved to be an incredibly fruitful year for the Newton St Cyres-based dairy and the team of cheesemakers are happy to share the secret of their ongoing awards success.
Tom Chatfield, sales and marketing manager said: “Over the past 12 months the Quickes team has really developed its selection process for assessing the truckles that are matured to a greater age.
“Our cheese is graded 1-100 by an external auditor and in recent history we have achieved 85% of stock at a score of 90 or above which is exceptional both in terms of quality and consistency. This is really all thanks to our Cheese Dairy Manager, Malcolm Mitchell, who has celebrated his 31st year on the farm.
“In addition to considering the technical marks that our cheese is awarded by external assessors, we now also implement a rigorous process that considers the different spheres of flavour, aesthetics and the exact characteristics of each cheese, much like the Continental affineurs.
“This means that as specially selected truckles mature from 12 to 18 months to 2 years we can enhance the complexity of certain flavours – making them more appealing to our customers and judges at cheese competitions such as the World Cheese Awards.
“We are also select profiles for specific customers or a sector of the market according to what best fits their requirements.”
Quickes also operate an open door policy that actively encourages their wholesale customers and other professionally interested parties to become engaged in the selection process to determine the characteristics that are right for their business.
Owen Davies, category manager from the leading speciality food supplier, Cheese Cellar, participated in the grading procedure during a tour of the dairy.
Owen said: “In my role, I regularly visit cheese producers all over the country and it is always refreshing to meet companies such as Quickes, who continue to pioneer new methods for creating the best cheese possible. It’s exciting to have experienced this process first hand and this level of commitment has been rightly rewarded at the World Cheese Awards, I’m delighted by Quickes much deserved success.”
Quickes is the largest British naturally matured traditional cheddar maker, selling to wholesalers and the independent market – and to export, mainly US and Australia.
The 1,500 acre farm has 500 cows grazing outside for 10-11 months of the year; the farm also grows crops to feed the cows, to sell and to support local wildlife in extensive environmental schemes.
The business employs 40 people in Newton St Cyres, near Exeter in Devon.
(from a press release)