After moving to the UK from Sydney—where she had worked as a cheesemonger—Stacey started making cheese at home in 2004. Having made the decision to turn this passion into a business, she started doing research to try to find out what was missing in the British cheese market. The research led to her decision to make a soft white rinded cheese in a style akin to the traditional French Camembert. They were advised by parties including French cheese consultant Ivan Larcher and Randolph Hodgson of Neal’s Yard Dairy.
Tunworth is a Camembert-style cheese. Its recipe has been refined and perfected over the years, and in 2010 Stacey and her head cheesemaker and business partner Charlotte moved into a new purpose-built dairy. There, they make up to 1000 cheeses a day using pasteurised cow’s milk bought from a dairy cooperative.
The whole process is done by hand, from the cutting to the ladling. From the cheese making room, the newly born Tunworth are put into the ripening rooms where they start growing their mixed coats of wrinkly Geotrichum and delicate white Penicillium, and then wrapped in waxed paper and boxed in poplar boxes. The final product is a 250g cheese, with a soft and thin rind. Inside, the creamy white paste has a distinctive vegetal, cabbagey aroma and an earthy fragrance of freshly cut mushroom.