WHAT IS CAERPHILLY?
This crumbly, British cheese is made from cow’s milk and is in the Cheddar family. Like many cheeses from that isle, historically there was more of a blue collar clientele for local cheeses. Consequently in the case of Caerphilly, it was popular with coal miners since it was more affordable then Cheddar (which has a lower moisture content). Today’s Carphillys are aged longer and tend to be more mass-produced then the farmhouse wheels of old.
WHERE IS CAERPHILLY MADE?
Origingally this cheese was made in the southern Wales town of Caerphilly. Some of the richest coal deposits in Britain still reside in this Welsh area. Today it is a popular industrial cheese and can be found all-over.
DIVORCE IN MEDIEVAL TIMES – I KILL YOU – REMOTELY
In the 13th century, Princess Alice of Angouleme had an affair with the Welsh Prince Gruffudd the Fair. But at the time she was married to Gilbert de Clare, the lord of Caerphilly castle. The naive Prince confessed his adultery to a monk, who confessed it in turn to Gilbert de Clare. So Princess Alice was sent back to France which angered Gruffudd who hung the monk. Gilbert, generally displeased with the whole situation, then hung Gruffudd. However when Princess Alice heard the news, she immediately dropped dead. While shock is a common explanation, malnutrition and poison also come to mind. Anyway, legend has it that her ghost haunts Caerphilly castle to this day.
WHAT CAN I PAIR WITH CAERPHILLY?
Chardonnay’s that are crisp or other dry white wines. This is not a strong flavored cheese so even mild reds can be problematic. For a U.K. cheese flight, contrary to normal try a Cheshire, Lancashire or Wensleydale (not flavored). This is an opportunity to see subtle differences in cheeses that reflect the English culture and countryside.