Tom and Lena Biggane have been making cheese on their farm near Charleville since 2001 and their highly regarded hard gouda-style goats cheese, Clonmore, was developed from recipes passed on to them by a Dutch neighbour.
It is made only from the heat-treated milk of their own herd of ‘spoilt’ goats, who have access to unusually lush pasture - which, in turn, lends unusual characteristics and richness to the cheese which is almost white, with small holes throughout and a waxed rind.
Clonmore is made in 2kg wheels using vegetarian rennet and sold from about 3 months, when it is mild and semi-firm, to 6-8 months when it has matured to become quite hard and with a stronger, more complex flavour.
The Bigganes also have a herd of cows and use their milk to make a small quantity of a hard, mild cows’ milk cheese, Shandrum.
Their cheese is mainly available locally and well worth looking out for, but is also sold by some speciality suppliers, including Sheridans, and features on menus.