The Grubb family have a long tradition of food and farming in the area around Cashel in Co. Tipperary, Ireland. Louis’ father bought Beechmount Farm and the surrounding 150 acres in the 1930’s and in 1978, Louis, his wife Jane and their family returned to the farm. The Grubbs first produced Cashel Blue (see separate entry), made from cow’s milk, in 1984. Jane was the original cheesemaker but in recent years she’s handed over that responsibility over to Geurt van den Dikkenburg who now oversees the operation. Having taken a step back from the day to day production, Jane then set about developing a variation of Cashel Blue made from sheep’s milk.
This cheese - Crozier Blue - was launched in 1993 and remains the only blue cheep’s milk cheese made in Ireland. The name “Crozier” is a reference to the hooked staff either carried by bishops or shepherds and an image of St Patrick’s crozier can be seen in the nearby Rock of Cashel. Milk for production is sourced from a 300 strong herd of Friesian ewes, located at Ballinamona Farm, owned by Louis and Jane’s nephew, Henry Clifton Brown. Two or three times each week, the milk is transported one and a half hours to the cheesemaking facility at Cashel, where it is transformed into the 3lb wheels.
Crozier has a full, sweet, rich and cream-like mouth feel, with notes of salt and toasted nuts. The interior paste is shot through with gentle blue veining and has a moist, yielding texture encased by a natural rind.