Style: Hard cooked, firm, eyed cheese, cow milk.
Origin: Section 28 Cheese, Woodside, South Australia.
Cheesemaker: Kym Masters
Handcrafted in very limited quantities from the best cow’s milk produced by the dairy, Monforte is a semi-hard cheese with a complex, but not overpowering flavour. It is sweet, milky and fruity when young and these flavours become more concentrated as the cheese ages. In the more mature cheese, the taste is buttery and creamy, with emerging roasted nut flavours and an earthy undertone. It is produced using pasteurised cows milk and non-animal rennet, before being matured in the Section 28 Caves cave for a minimum of 12 months.
Kym spent 20 years working in finance before time living in Piedmont, Italy gave him pause. We spoke to masters about the transition from Banker to award winning cheesemaker and passionate artisan producer. His want was twofold, the complex world of banking left little time for his family and his young children struggled to understand what their father did for a living. Cheesemaking allowed more time with the kids and a tangible, hands on occupation his kids could see their father working on. Kym's other mission, make benchmark, alpine style cheeses like those he had experienced in Europe. Our observations from meeting many cheesemongers is they share a common passion for science, be it ammateur or professional.
Cheesemaking is a scientific, methodical and formal process. You start with fresh, raw milk milk and finish with cheese. The more control of transport, quality assurance and communication between farmer and cheesemaker you can achieve the better the outcome. Masters has built his cheesemaking facility a 4 minute drive from his milk supplier and personally collects the milk every morning in 500l batches. His dairy produces 300 kilograms of fine, hand crafted cheese every week, matured on site at the purpose built affinage rooms.