Stinking Bishop is a washed-rind cheese produced since 1972 by Charles Martell and Son at Hunts Court Farm, Dymock, Gloucestershire, in the west of England. It is made from the milk of Gloucester cattle.
By 1972 there were low numbers of Gloucester breed heifers left in the world. Charles Martell bought up many of the surviving cows, and began to produce cheese from their milk, not initially for its own sake, but to promote interest in the breed. Since then his own herd has expanded to 25 cows, and there has been a revival of interest by other farmers, which has increased the total number of cows to around 450. The relatively small size of Martell’s herd means that the Gloucester milk is combined and pasteurised with the milk of Friesian cattle from another farm nearby. The fat content is 48%.
The colour of Stinking Bishop ranges from white/yellow to beige, with orange-to-grey rind. It is moulded into wheels 2 kilograms (4.4 lb) in weight, 20 centimetres (7.9 in) in diameter, and 4 centimetres (1.6 in) deep. Only about 20 tonnes are produced each year.
The distinctive odour comes from the process with which the cheese is washed during its ripening; it is immersed in perry made from the local Stinking Bishop pear (from which the cheese gets its name) every four weeks while it matures. To increase the moisture content and to encourage bacterial activity, salt is not added until the cheese is removed from its mould.
About Sagebury Fine Foods
A delightful family-run, independent delicatessen and cafe. Strongly traditional, we carry an extensive range of English and continental cheeses, cooked meats and savoury products. We are based in the famous Cheap Street in historic Frome in Somerset. Therefore we are long-established and therefore have built a reputation for quality beyond our renowned local status. Above all friendly and welcoming, we hope you will find something to catch your eye.