“It’s a Welsh miner’s cheese,” Cathy Bradley explained, offering me a taste of a very approachable, creamy white seasonal hard cheese, reminiscent of a clothbound cheddar.
I am standing in the bustling tasting room of Cato Corner Farm, widely considered among very best American cheesemakers, off a small rural road just south of Colchester.
There is a small table with a dozen or so cheeses of various varieties — blue, washed rind, aged and milky fresh.
I am here for Myfanwy (MA-VAN-WEE) a fleeting seasonal cow’s milk variety now available at the farm, and at farmers markets in Coventry, Colchester and Stonington, as well as Greenmarkets in New York City.
Bradley explains that the cheese is “cheddared,” a labor-intensive process for the farm, part of the reason it is made in smaller batches.
“We make it absolutely in the dead of winter. It’s the very creamy winter’s milk. You can tell when you look at it by the color of it, compared to some of the cheeses made by the summertime’s milk that have this bright kind of come-at-you-yellow, whereas the Myfanwy definitely has that paler whiter color,” said Bradley.
It has a smooth agreeable paste — the separate curds still barely visible where they have been pressed and knitted together — rich, approachable, clean in flavor, from the winter hay, with a final lingering ashy minerality.
Cato Corner Farm, 178 Cato Corner Rd, Colchester, Connecticut. Shop Hours: Fridays & Saturdays 10-4, Sundays 11-4. Phone: 860.537.3884