MULTI-award-winning Town Mill Cheesemonger Justin Tunstall is celebrating his fifth year in business by selling the last truckle left in the world of one of Britain’s great cheddars.
Denhay Cheddar, made locally near Broadoak since 1959, has come to the end of the rind and Justin has the sole surviving truckle of the acclaimed Dorset cheese.
Denhay Farms ceased cheese production after rising production costs forced them out of the market, despite the cheddar’s popularity and having huge supermarket customers including Waitrose, Tesco and Morrisons.
At a birthday party for the Cheesemonger at The Town Mill, where he and his wife Amanda ceremonially opened the final truckle, Denhay owner George Streatfeild said: “Although we became Waitrose’s own-label supplier, we were too big and too small.
“It cost us £1,000 to make a ton of cheddar, whereas it costs Dairycrest just £93.”
But Justin has saved the last of the best for his customers, buying the final truckle ever made to sell in his tiny shop at £1.75 per 100 gms.
He added: “It’s a great shame that Denhay Cheddar will be no more, it’s a superb cheese and we’ll miss it.
“But fortunately more and more independent producers are creating other great and exciting cheeses in the West Country and we’re delighted to keep stocking the very best of them.
“We have had a wonderful five years running the shop and we’re thrilled with the success we have had winning so many awards, including Cheesem-onger of the Year 2014.
“We’ve learned an awful lot, love what we do and we have a great time doing it. The success of the shop is an impossible dream come true.”
In February this year, Mr Tunstall was also crowned the cream cheese of the crop in the Farm Shop and Deli Awards ‘Cheesemonger of the Year’ category. There were nearly 300 entries nationwide for the competition and the Town Mill Cheesemonger was one of 12 winners in the separate categories.
The awards were designed to celebrate the unsung heroes of the high street and speciality retail scene, with categories ranging from butchers to garden centres.