Co-owner of Upper Bench Estate Winery & Creamery Shana Miller and her squad were making the specialty, in-demand cheese, Belle Marie, on Thursday morning. (Robin Grant-Western News)

FOODIE FRIDAY: Behind the scenes at South Okanagan state-of-the-art, artisan cheesemaking operation

Eating cheese is harder than making it

Hardworking cheesemakers are busy behind the scenes at the state-of-the-art operation at Upper Bench Estate Winery & Creamery in Penticton.

Head cheesemaker Shana Miller has owned the winery with her husband, award-winning winemaker, Gavin Miller, since 2010.

The creamery, located in the back of building, makes eight different, handcrafted, artisan cheeses — with its mild, blue cheese, called King Cole, being its most well-known, Miller said. This blue cheese was named after her father.

READ MORE: FOODIE FRIDAY: New Thai food restaurant serving up happiness

All of the cheeses, which include washed-rind, brie, and blue cheeses, are gluten and additive free from pasturized Canadian cow’s milk from D Dutchmen Dairy in Sicamous.

“We make three batches of cheese a week,” said Miller on Thursday while making a fresh batch of the creamery’s newest addition, a tangy and sharp-flavoured cheese, Belle Marie.

It’s made by separating the delicate curds and then placing them spoonful-by-spoonful into the molds. It has a layer of black ash under a “white bloomy rind,” which makes it visually appealing. And it’s named after her mother.

Carefully crafting best-selling cheeses, adding up to about 6,000 kilograms a year, sounds difficult. But Miller said there’s a trick to it.

“After you’ve made the cheese, you can do different things with it to create different types.

READ MORE: Video: Touring the newest luxurious winery in the South Okanagan

“Our two top blue cheeses — our Grey Baby and King Cole — it’s the same exact recipe, but two different techniques.”

To report a typo, email: editor@pentictonwesternnews.com.

Just Posted

ALC prohibits land exemption status for three Westbank school sites

The decision means a new secondary school won’t be built along Webber Road

West Kelowna gets more firefighting power

10 new recruits have officially been placed on the city’s roster

Kelowna pot shop looks to the future on Canada’s first cannibersary

Kelowna’s Hobo Recreational Cannabis store has been in operation since July 25, 2019

Movie extras wanted for Kelowna film production

A street hockey scene needs drop-in extras outside of the Kelowna Gospel Mission

Transportation costs jump by more than $1M for Central Okanagan School District

The school district expects to spend $4.68 million on school buses this year

Scheer, Trudeau, Singh haggle over potential minority government outcome

If you believe the polls, it appears the Liberals and Conservatives are neck-and-neck

‘The more you test, the more you find’: Beef recalls a sign of success, experts say

Despite appearances, experts say a recent rise in major recalls is not a sign of food supply problems

One year later: Vernon pot stores look back at legalization

Edibles made legal on first anniversary of recreational cannabis

VIDEO: Meet your Kelowna-Lake Country candidates

All seven Kelowna-Lake Country candidates answer questions about themselves and their policy

VIDEO: Meet your Central Okanagan-Similkameen-Nicola candidates

Central Okanagan-Similkameen-Nicola candidates answer questions about themselves and their policy

Japanese buyer expands wood pellet contract with B.C.’s Pinnacle

Mitsui and Co. increases contract with Interior energy producer

Great Vernon Pumpkin Race to star in South Korean documentary

Pumpkin Classic event to kick off this weekend with gourd weigh-ins

ELECTION 2019: Have Justin Trudeau’s Liberals really cut middle-class taxes?

Conservative Andrew Scheer vows to cut bottom bracket, NDP’s Jagmeet Singh targets wealth tax

B.C. RCMP officer suing the force for malicious prosecution

Cpl. Tammy Hollingsworth cleared of wrongdoing after misconduct hearing

Most Read