Cheese on top!
By Shradha Aswani
Thailand may be known for its spicy curries and flavourful street food, but did you know that it also boasts a thriving cheese industry? Despite the country’s tropical climate, local farmers and artisans are producing delicious and unique varieties of cheese using locally-sourced ingredients and traditional techniques. From creamy brie-style cheeses to tangy blue varieties, there’s something for every cheese lover to discover.
Here’s our list of local cheese brands that you can enjoy, during and after this month of love.
CHIANGRAI CHEESE (pictured above)
Chiangrai Cheese uses unique starter cultures to create distinctive cheese flavours found exclusively in the Northern province of Chiang Rai, Thailand. Their retail section delivers all across Thailand, and is focused
on locality, only working with local farmers.
Far ahead of their start as a pop-up stall in the 2014 Bangkok Farmer’s Market, VIVIN Grocery is now the go-to destination for artisanal Thai cheeses. With branches in both Asoke and Ekkamai, the brand focuses
on sustainably minimising waste, using only natural or organic products, and for the most part, being farmed and produced locally or regionally. Apart from being a cheese manufacturer, VIVIN grocery is also a stockist of other local cheese brands, and has been a huge facilitator in the rise of artisanal cheese culture in the country.
LITTLE GOAT FARM AND CHEESERY
Little Goat Farm and Cheesery is the proud venture of Thailand’s first female cheesemaker, Rachanikorn ‘Kai’ Srikong. Their goat farm located in Nakhon Pathom boasts fresh goat milk that comes from natural, hormone- and additive-free reared goats which is then turned to cheese using traditional techniques.
Jartisann is a homegrown brand that specialises in unique artisanal cheeses, originally established in Wangtan, Chiang Mai, by power couple Jarutat and Ann Snidwongse Na Ayuthaya. The brand is amongst the few made by Thai cheese makers, and uses sustainable methods and custom-designed equipment to create over 11 types of cheese. All their products are hand-crafted, with locally sourced cow, goat, and buffalo milk from Chiang Mai itself.
Anticaluna produces premium cheese from milk that is imported from Italy. It merges Italian tastes with Asian craftsmanship, and offers a range of options from ricotta to mozzarella, ready to be shipped anywhere in Thailand. The cheese is produced in Bangkok to meet the needs of the city, and uses generations-old techniques of traditional Italian dairy farms to maintain their quality.
Dofann started out with the production of their single offering – fresh goat cheese. They have now matured to have over nine varieties of goat cheese under production, alongside cheese made from cow’s milk, and from a blend of goat and cow’s milk. The cheese is carefully handmade in Chiang Mai using traditional processes and French expertise.
Made from source-certified organic soybeans, grown locally in Chiang Mai, Swees Cheese makes transitioning completely to a plant-based diet easy. As one of the leading brands to produce plant-based cheese in Thailand, the company ensures that they use healthy, organic ingredients and minimum processing.
BUTTER ME UP
Butter Me Up is known for their vegan nut butters and cheeses, which are free of gluten and refined sugars. Aside from being PCOS-friendly and high in protein, their nut cheeses are available in a variety of forms, including cheese wheels, cheese spreads, and cheese platters.