Our Unique Artisanal Cheeses
Under Ontario's milk quota system, the Upper Canada Cheese Company has acquired the exclusive right to produce 2 unique cheeses from the milk of a local Niagara herd of Guernsy cows cared for on the nearby Comfort family farm. This herd of about 100 animals is quite rare being one of only a half dozen Guernsey herds in Canada.
Comfort Cream is a camembert-style soft, white bloomy rind cheese with a silky, creamy, golden interior. Rich flavours of fresh truffles prevail with an intense, buttery palate and a long, tangy finish. This delicate and luscious artisanal cheese is hand salted, hand turned and hand wrapped. We store Comfort Cream in our temperature and humidity-controlled cellars for at least 4 weeks before sale. An additional few weeks of aging will see the cheese ripen and mature in flavour, texture and colour.
Niagara Gold is an Oka-style semi-soft, washed rind cheese fashioned after recipes developed by the Trappist Monks of the Loire Valley. This is a cheese with nutty, earthy overtones and mellow, buttery flavours. This luscious cheese is delicately mild and sweet when young and gains pungency and piquant qualities with age. The rind may be eaten or trimmed depending on your taste. We begin to sell Niagara Gold after 5 months of careful aging in our cellars. Under good conditions, it ages well for months and continues to develop unique flavours over time.
We produce fresh Guernsey Gold Ricotta cheese as a wonderful by-product of our main cheese production. The whey that is left over after cheese curds have formed is then transferred to a large steam kettle to produce fresh ricotta cheese. We make a very limited amount of this chese and it's best fresh within a day or so.
The Guernsey Herd
The Guernsey breed was developed on the island of Guernsey in the English Channel in 980 A.D. by French monks. The breed is known for their quiet temperament and milk that is high in butter fat and protein and rich in A-2 beta-casein, calcium, vitamins A and D. Guernseys are smaller cows which produce about half the milk a Holstein would but they are ideal grazers. This results in a uniquely golden-shaded, flavourful milk with distinct local characteristics which is ideal for cheesemaking.
We have access to a single herd in Niagara owned by the Comfort family whose roots here date back to the time of the United Empire Loyalists in the late 18th century. The farm has been in their family for five generations and they remain dedicated to the land and to maintaining the herd. The Guernsey herd if a fed hay in the winter when they are not outside and grain supplements that are grown and ground on the Comfort farm. The variation in diet results in interesting and intriguing changes in the cheese flavour and colour from season to season, underlining the artisanal qualities of our cheeses.