Lord of the Hundreds
Owned and operated by Cliff and Julie Dyball who purchased the dairy in 2002 after careers in finance and insurance, Traditional Cheese Dairy focuses on making hand-made raw milk cheeses. Located in the village of Stonegate in East Sussex, UK, the dairy produces cheeses made from the cow, sheep and goat’s milk of local single herd family farms. Today, the dairy produces about five tons of cheese every month that they sell at local farmer’s markets as well as stores throughout England. Recently, they have started to export to the United States and Canada. The unusual name of this award winning cheese is in reference to tax collectors who worked on behalf of the local Lords who, during Saxon times, would oversee a region consisting of 100 Shires. On the Traditional Cheese dairy property is a marker where the people gathered to pay their taxes. Aged for 4 months, Lord of the Hundreds is produced from raw sheep’s milk and is square-shaped with convex sides. This is because the cheese is ladled into basket molds without pressing. The weight of the cheese forces the sides to round outward during aging. The cheeses are rubbed and turned every other day during the aging process, which creates a white and light brown natural rind.
Underneath is a golden yellow paste, which is darker toward the outside of the cheese. The texture is dry and a bit grainy, rather like an aged Pecorino or Parmigiano-Reggiano. Its flavor is sweet and savory with notes of grass, roasted hazelnuts and salty caramel.
With its balance of sweet and savory flavors, Lord of the Hundreds is lovely when served with Membrillo or quince jam on a cheese board. Many chefs use this cheese as an alternative to Parmigiano-Reggiano.
Lord of the Hundreds is best paired with a medium-bodied Pinot-Noir or a Cream Ale as a beer selection.