A modern cheese, first made in the late 20th century, Shropshire Blue may have its foundations in Scotland, but is now produced alongside Stilton at dairies in the English Midlands. Cropwell Bishop Dairy is a family owned business operating for 3 generations.
As with the best stiltons, curds are gently hand-ladled into each mould; a time-consuming and painstaking process that helps to preserve the structure of the curd, resulting in cheeses which are buttery and crumbly in texture. The addition of annatto imparts its characteristic orange hue to the cheese – a striking contrast to the thin blue veins, and lends a mild spiciness to the mellow flavour.
Naturally rinded, cheeses are spiked at around 6 – 8 weeks allowing blueing to radiate through the wheel. Their cheese is soft, sweet and savoury with a rich, not overly spicey flavour. Notes of honey, leather, tobacco and molasses can be found.