Handcrafted Cheese in Cape Town
As with most foods, cheese is better when it’s organically crafted and devoid of the processed additions that one finds in most supermarket varieties today. The downside is that handmade cheese isn’t exactly easy to come by in the city. Luckily, you don’t have to head for the hills to find artisanal cheese products — we’ve discovered two of the best inner-city cheeseries that are keeping it local.
AroundCheese, formerly known as Constantia Cheesery, is situated in the V&A Waterfront’s Market on the Wharf but also sells at the Oranjezicht City Farm Organic Market, The Old Biscuit Mill, the Earthfair Market and the Slow Food market in Stellenbosch. Owner Jane Selander is passionate about locally crafted cheeses that tick the ethical and sustainable boxes and so only sources her cheeses from small farm producers.
Because the way in which these cheeses are made are just as important as the end result, Jane makes sure that the products she stocks Around Cheese with are made as naturally as possible, with no colourants, preservatives or additives. They’re also entirely vegetarian as they all contain vegetable rennet instead of any non-dairy animal by-products.
Perhaps Cape Town’s famous Bree Street needs to be retitled to suit Culture Club Cheese —Brie Street is a far tastier option— as this little eatery is a veritable ploughman’s platter of different varieties of cheese. Choose from Grancoeur Camembert from France or locally-produced Wineland Blue, or an entire range of breads, charcuterie and seasonal fruit and veg. Started by Englishman Luke, along with his wife Jessica, Culture Club has brought artisanal cheese into the 21st century with an enticing menu and a shop with simple but inviting décor. Luke’s own passion for cheese is reflected in the restaurant — cheese as a ‘culture’, both an ingredient and as a way of life.
Around Cheese and Culture Club are unique in the fact that they both bring a little epicurean inspiration from a pastoral environment, and through their hand-crafted cheeses, a taste of the country to your table.