New Zealand is known for so many things. Diverse communities, magnificent nature travel destinations, a Rugby powerhouse and so much more. But the country is also known for its many dairy products including goat and sheep milk.
New Zealand cheese is also a must-try at least once in your life. There are more than a hundred of locally produced cheese products at the many farmhouses in the country. That is why in this article, we present you the best cheeses made here in New Zealand.
We are well aware that our very own Whangaripo Buffalo Cheese is one of the best in the country. But we decided to exclude our signature product from this list and instead show you top products from our competitors.
Massimo’s Italian Cheese/s
Back in the early 2000s, mozzarella products in New Zealand were over-priced. That is why most residents refused to buy them or are unable to. That all changed in 2010 when a couple of professionals decided to create their mozzarella product for New Zealanders.
Massimo and Marine Lubisco, husband and wife, accountant and economist are the people behind Massimo’s Italian Cheese. As an Italian family, Massimo and Marine incorporated Italian roots to making their products.
Massimo and Marine were shocked to find out that there were not much fresh mozzarella products in the country despite its high-quality dairy. So, they ditched their day jobs and proceeded to make cheese.
One of their best products is the ricotta, which received several awards in NZ and worldwide. You can now get Massimo cheese products in most supermarkets and stores in New Zealand.
“I love cheese.” You’ll see this message from Mercer’s box containers. Mercer was founded and is owned by Netherlands national Albert Alferink who moved to New Zealand back in 1981.
Mercer offers a wide selection of cheese made from goat, sheep, cow and of course, buffalo milk. Their production is a set of sophisticated steps that includes a temperature-controlled storage system.
Alferink is considered an artisan when it comes to making cheeses. Back in 2016, they won the best sheep cheese and artisan cheese awards at the Champions of Cheese Awards. Mercer offers a cheese-making tour at their factory in Onewhero.
Seeing them make cheese will surely work your appetite or even go the extra mile and inspire you to be a cheesemaker yourself.
He, together with his team, is still trying to create new cheese products for thousands of people to enjoy. Nothing is boring when it comes to making cheese.
Clevedon Valley Buffalo Cheese
One of our biggest competitors when it comes to Buffalo cheese. But we can’t deny the fact that Clevedon Valley produces one of the best buffalo cheese products here in New Zealand. Clevedon’s owners Richard and Helene Dorresteyn were the first-ever Kiwis to bring over a milking herd of Riverine water buffalo to the country.
They started back in 2006 after finding out that there were no cheesemakers in Clevedon Farmers Market. It was a chance of a lifetime and they took it and it worked big time. Their mozzarella, ricotta, bocconcini, and blue cheese are the best.
Their buffalo cheese products are also packed with plenty of health benefits.