Double cheese crown for Settle shop

Craven Herald: Andy Swincsoe collects the Cheesemonger of the Year Award from John Farrand of the Guild of Fine Food Andy Swincsoe collects the Cheesemonger of the Year Award from John Farrand of the Guild of Fine Food

The Courtyard Dairy in Settle, Yorkshire has been named Cheese Counter of the Year, and owner Andy Swinscoe has been crowned Cheesemonger of the Year. Andy collected the titles at this year’s World Cheese Awards – a competition organised by The Guild of Fine Food.

The specialist dairy shop, run by Andy and Kathy Swinscoe, rose to the top of the 10 finalists from 80 entries from throughout Great Britain.

Judge Patrick McGuigan said: “The Courtyard Dairy is a brilliant example of how a small shop can do great things.

“Andy and Kathy Swinscoe may only have opened the shop last year but it’s truly inspirational.

“The shop looks terrific, it is temperature controlled which means that the cheeses can be displayed in the open which is great for immediate impact. “Andy has visited and made cheese with almost all of his suppliers and remains in constant contact with them which helps him to source the very best of each batch and also add new products as soon as they are made.” Opened in 2012, The Courtyard Dairy is a specialist cheese shop selling the very best cheeses from the British Isles and Europe – with a firm commitment to supporting the few remaining independent farmhouse cheesemakers. Andy said: “This has been a terrific end to November which also included the birth of our baby girl.

“I went to the BBC Good Food Show at the NEC to judge the World Cheese Awards and at the judges’ lunch on Wednesday I was called up on stage to receive the Cheese Counter of the Year Award.

“I was completely shocked but really pleased for my wife Kathy as she has worked alongside me for the last few years – supporting me and working with me to open our own cheese shop.

“Then on Thursday I had to stand before a different set of judges, alongside other cheesemongers to identify different ages and types of cheese, to cut and wrap cheese and then to talk about one of my top cheese choices, I chose Dale End Cheddar from Yorkshire, and finally to answer quick fire questions against the clock.

“It was nerve-wracking but it was a brilliant result.”

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