Matatoki-based The Cheese Barn has had an exciting week starting with the NZ Cheese Awards on May 4 at the Wintec Te Pūkenga Atrium in Hamilton.

This year’s New Zealand Cheese Awards was an extra special event as it marked the 20th anniversary of the New Zealand Specialist Cheesemakers Association.

Prior to the night, The Cheese Barn had been awarded a Gold Medal for their Organic Halloumi and a Bronze Medal for their Organic Gouda for 2023.

The Cheese Barn’s last big win at the NZ Cheese Awards was in 2018 they were presented with a Gold Medal and a Trophy Medal for their Organic Cumin Seed Gouda. They then went on to win the Champion of Champions Cheese Trophy for the Organic Cumin Seed Gouda which was an overall award amongst all the categories.

This year they were excited to receive the Kiwi Labels Champion Greek/Cypriot Style Cheese award for their Organic Halloumi.

The judges noted the Halloumi has “a very clean flavour, buttery, and milky flavour. Slightly spongy texture but also nice and smooth and soft.” This is the first time The Cheese Barn has entered the Halloumi, so they were very excited to come away with a big win.