Speak to Richard Thomas about cheese and he’ll open your eyes and taste buds to the joys of cheese….plus wine, for that matter. And he is very vocal about what he considers some of the myths surrounding cheese.
“I’ve become ‘lactose intolerance’ intolerant” he said recently, which he goes on to explain…
“In a truly natural cheese such as Parmigiano, Gruyere, Stilton, Farmhouse Cheddar and such-like, there is NO LACTOSE, whether they are made using Cow, Goat, Buffalo or Sheep milk.
“Lactose intolerance has nothing to do with the type of milk used. Surprised? Well it is almost entirely due to how the cheese (or yoghurt) is made. In a traditionally-made cheese, there is 0% lactose as like a dry wine, all the sugar is fermented out. Instead of lumping all types of cheese together, blame it on which cheese you buy.
“Some of the more commercial cheese you may buy, apart from lacking flavour and textural pleasure, contains residual lactose – the fats, proteins and sugars are incompletely digested by the friendly bacteria that make cheese so good for our bodies. Yeh, you may not believe me, but that’s up to you.
“As an example, Herve Mons camembert (which we stock in our Cheese Shop), states the scientific analysis as ‘Sugars 0%’ and Carbohydrates 0%.”
Fighting words but Richard is a fountain of knowledge when it comes to all matters cheese after spending over 40 years dedicated to his craft (no pun intended). When he talks about the history, diversity, richness and provenance of the cheese industry you could almost swap the word ‘cheese’ for ‘wine’, such are their similarities. You can find Richard in the cheese shop at our Yarra Valley Cellar Door on Thursdays and Fridays each week.
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