Posted: 30/05/2019

White Lake wins BCA Supreme Champ for third year in a row

Somerset’s White Lake Cheese has won the Supreme Champion trophy at the British Cheese Awards for an unprecedented third year in a row – with yet another different cheese.

White Lake Cheese English Pecorino British Cheese Awards 2019
English Pecorino is a sheep’s milk cheese which is washed in brine three times a week and matured for six months

Its English Pecorino, a sheep’s milk cheese, took the top honour at the awards – staged at the annual Royal Bath & West Show just a stone’s throw from where the cheese is made.

Reserve Champion was awarded to Isle of Wight Soft while Long Clawson’s Stilton won several trophies, including Best English Cheese.

Other major award winners included Connage Aged Gouda (Best Scottish), Mature Teifi (Best Welsh) and Cais Na Tire Gouda (Best Irish).

Devon cheesemake Mary Quicke was the recipient of the annual Cheese Industry award, for her work founding the Academy of Cheese and decades of service running cheddar-maker Quickes.

White Lake has now won the Supreme Champion trophy with three different cheeses, made by Roger Longman and Pete Humphries at its dairy in Pylle, Somerset. In 2017 it won for Pavé Cobble and in 2018 it won for Sheep Rustler. 

This year’s award-winning cheese English Pecorino is made from thermised sheep’s milk with vegetarian rennet. It is washed in brine three times a week and is matured for around six months.

This year’s British Cheese Awards attracted just under 900 entries from 122 makers, with 70 judges reviewing 123 classes of cheese. Cheeses entered came from over 54 counties across the UK and Ireland.

All the cheeses were scored on presentation, texture, aroma, flavour and balance. Dependent on the scores that each cheese received, gold, silver and bronze medals were awarded.

Roger Longman, co-founder and cheesemaker at White Lake Cheese said: “I was ecstatic when our name was read out as Supreme Champion. It was great that some of the team were at the awards dinner and were able to step up to the podium to collect the prize. It’s thanks to the whole team that this happened and that we are able to produce our award-winning cheeses.

Julius Longman, chairman of the British Cheese Awards, said: “This English Pecorino from White Lake Cheese is an exceptional cheese and a worthy Supreme Champion. It has a semi-hard texture with a well-balanced creamy and nutty flavour. It’s third year in a row for Pete and Roger and a testament to their skill in cheesemaking.

All the Winners of the British Cheese Awards 2019 were announced at the British Cheese Awards Dinner held on Wednesday 29th May. The awards and dinner, celebrating their 26th year, took place on the first day of the Royal Bath & West Show, Shepton Mallet, Somerset.

As well as Supreme Champion, the Reserve Champion, the four Country Awards and the nine Main Category Awards, there were two new awards for Best Block Cheddar and the other for Best Traditional Cheddar. This year there were also 13 Special Awards, including an award for Best Specialist Cheesemaker.

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