I love cheese. I love cheese. I love cheese. And this is the place to go crazy with cheese if you happen to be in the neighborhood. For cheese lovers like me, the thought of entering a “Smelly Cheese Shop” just makes my heart race and hands clammy. It did for a few days before I left Manila. And by the time we were on the road, I already had Ana saying, “Smelly Cheese Shop! Smelly Cheese Shop!” in the car with me as we drove to Hunter.
This was heaven. The Smelly Cheese shop can be found in two places in the Hunter Valley region (i think), but of the two that I got to visit, I liked the one in the Tempus two cellars better. Simply because it was way bigger!
When we entered, it wasn’t smelly at all. There were displays of the local cheeses in the front of the entrance. There were jams, confits, crackers and all sorts of cheese accessories and condiments surrounding the refrigerated displays. I saw single, double and triple cream of bries and camemberts…and new things like tasting portions of local blues and a wonderful cheese called “Netherby Blue”…which is much like an aged medium cheese (which was orange) with veins of blue cheese growing on it (AWESOME!). It was just heavenly — creamy while retaining a slightly sharp aged character…and then you bite into a pungent blue cheese vein and everything changes. It was now something I had to bring home.
The triple cream brie was like butter…only it was sooo creamy and smooth but not runny. The cheese was thick.
Then…to the left…there was a dark room that was enclosed in glass…it was a fromagerrie…a cheese fridge…a cheese heaven! I entered and then that great pungent smell from all the cheeses greeted me. The wonderful triple bries…truffle bries and even artisan butter were all waiting to be bought…I couldn’t help but touch all the neatly packaged cheeses…from Australia and from all over the world! There must’ve been a hundred varieties in that small room!
In the left displays outside, you could get pre-cut cheese selections for small picnics and take out. We did get one with brie, aged cheddar ad a blue cheese just to satisfy our cravings after entering the shop.
As an ultimate souvenir, Ana and I got a small chunk of truffle brie.It was quite pricey but when we opened it, it was just delicious. It had black truffle bits in a base of triple cream brie. Heaveeeeen! You should not miss this experience at all..even for those who aren’t that into cheese as I am. Enjoy these pictures!