One robust wheel, Montgomery’s Cheddar is, for many, the benchmark English farmhouse cheddar (so iconic that you can even find it tattooed!). Made in the traditional clothbound style, Montgomery’s is a rich and meaty cheese with notes of sweet, almost caramelized, fruit. With age, some wheels develop an added nuttiness and a drier texture.
The third generation farmers of the Montgomery family employ a hyper-traditional recipe to make their cheddar. To raw cow’s milk, they add calf’s rennet and starter cultures—the same ones used when the family started making cheese 70 years ago. The cultures give the cheddar its dynamic flavor, but they can be difficult to handle; as a result, wheels can vary drastically.
Continuing with the tradition, cheesemakers use an old, slow peg mill to give the cheese its brittle texture, and once formed, the wheel is wrapped in cloth for 12 to 14 months—though some are suited to 18 months of aging.
Montgomery’s Cheddar is a pleasure to pair. An IPA with strong citrus and fruit flavor will provide a zippy balance to the wedge’s musty notes while pulling out its fruity side. And since the Montgomery cows graze on apples, we think a high-tannin English cider is just as fitting.