I always come to each review product with an open mind but I nevertheless sometimes have a pretty good inkling that I won't like some of them. Unfortunately, such was the case when Butlers Farmhouse Cheeses sent me a slab of their Blacksticks Blue cheese to try. I just don't like the idea of eating mouldy cheese but I still gave it a fair trial. Unfortunately I didn't like the taste either, but I've never liked any blue-veined cheese that I've ever tried.
However, I did pass it on to Mike and he happily munched away on it, declaring it delicious, with a rich, deep flavour that reminded him slightly of Munster. Not bad at all coming from a Frenchman ! He was impressed (as was I, even if I didn't like the strong taste) because it was the first time he had seen an orange blue-veined cheese. Butlers describe it as "a unique soft blue veined cheese, handmade only by Butlers at Inglewhite Dairy in rural Lancashire. With a distinctive amber hue, Blacksticks Blue reveals a delicious creamy smooth yet tangy taste. Adding perfect colour to any cheese selection, this very special soft blue cheese is one of a kind - an upbeat British classic that is truly different to other blue cheeses". For that reason alone, it makes a great addition to a cheese board because it looks so striking.
I'm also impressed by the family values hidden behind the slogan "handmade with love by the Butler family". They explain : "All of the cheeses in the Blacksticks range are hand-crafted in small batches. Curds are hand cut, stirred and then gently poured into individual moulds before resting, allowing the cheeses adequate time to drain naturally, resulting in the characteristic soft texture that Blacksticks is known for. Each cheese is then pierced and carefully hand wrapped prior to being nurtured and turned for five to eight weeks whilst it matures to its optimum taste and texture. Very temperamental when maturing, our dedicated Blacksticks cheese makers give specific care and attention to this cheese, ensuring that we always get a great result."
For Christmas, its been packaged in a mini truckle to make it look even prettier on your cheese board.
Mike has said he'd like to try it as cheese on toast or on top of a baked potato and I'm tempted too, as I feel the flavour would be less pronounced and appeal more to my tastebuds.
star rating : 4/5
RRP : £15.92 per kilo
Other reviews you may be interested in :