FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

WHAT ARE YOUR OPEN HOURS?


Current open hours: Every Day 10-5




DO I HAVE TO CALL BEFORE VISITING?


No, just come when we're open, pick up a self-guided tour map at the front gate or the store and explore the farm yourself. If you would like to book a tour for your family or a group, you can email tours@cheeseworks.ca for more information.




DO YOU SELL BUTTER OR CREAM?


Unfortunately no - we don't currently have the space or equipment needed for those products but if that changes you'll be the first to know!




HOW SHOULD I CARE FOR MY CHEESE?


Your cheese is happy wrapped tightly in the fridge until you’re ready to eat it. Serve fresh cheese, like Fromage Frais cold. For most other cheeses, unwrap a few minutes before serving to allow it to warm up slightly which activates the subtle flavours. Cheese can be resealed in a glass container or wrapped in parchment paper or beeswax wraps.




DO YOU SELL RAW MILK?


No, in Canada, the sale of raw milk is prohibited. Our milk-on-tap dispenser features pasteurized, non-homogeonized, grass-fed milk. However, we do sell raw milk cheese; legally, we can sell unpasteurized cheeses that are aged for at least 60 days. Our raw milk cheeses are aged even longer to allow for flavour development.




HOW LONG DOES CHEESE LAST?


Our cheeses vary in shelf-life from a week to several months. For most hard cheeses, the Best Before date , is really just a guide to optimum flavour, as the cheese doesn’t suddenly go bad at that date. Optimum flavour is a matter of personal taste and culture. The French, for instance, like their brie quite ripe, with a runny centre. Some Canadians may find that too strong for their taste. Its up to you. Fresh cheeses, however, should be consumed by the Best Before date for best flavour. Regardless of the best before date, once a package is opened and exposed to air, the cheese should be consumed within 3-5 days or small spots of mould may develop.




HOW CAN I BUY YOUR CHEESE WHOLESALE?


If you are buying for a restaurant or store you can email us about purchasing through one of our excellent distributors. If you are looking for a large volume of cheese for a special event we can often arrange one-off purchases of bulk cheese through our store. For all sales inquires please email sales@cheeseworks.ca




WHAT IS THERE TO DO?


1. Meet our animals; we have cows, calves, sheep, goats, pigs, rabbits, chickens, horses, ponies and more. You can go right into the rabbit hutch, and during the summer, right into the "kritter korner" where the sheep, goats, and chickens live. 2. Watch the cheesemakers working (and dancing) through the windows on the cheeseplant next to the store 3. Check out our "Mooseum", our old milking parlour, where you can see some vintage dairy equipment, photos, videos about our cheese, and watch the livestream of our cows in the robotic milker. 4. Walk down the trail to the back pond (weather permiting), wave to the cows in the pasture, and try and spot the beaver in the pond. 5. Enjoy free cheese samples in our farmgate store and browse the wide range of other local food items, kitchen ware, decore, and toys. 6. During the summer: Enjoy a farm-fresh latte or soft-serve ice cream cone in our seasonal calfe or stay for a panini, baked good, or cheese platter.




IS THERE AN ADMISSION FEE?


No! Our whole farm is available to visit, with the help of a self-guided tour map, for free whenever we are open.




IS YOUR CHEESE VEGETARIAN?


We do not use any animal rennet in our cheese - instead we use a synthetic alternative that appears on our label as "enzyme". That means all but one of our cheeses are vegetarian. The one exception is our Feta (and Sunshine Feta) which does contain an enzime called lipase derived from sheep.




DO YOU SELL CHEESEMAKING SUPPLIES?


We do not sell individual cheesemaking ingredients but we do sell wonderful cheesemaking kits by Canadian company, makecheese.ca. These kits contain microbial cultures, rennet tablets, and everything else you need (minus milk) to start making cheese at home.




IS YOUR CHEESE SAFE TO EAT WHILE PREGNANT?


Typically, health warnings for pregnant women are concerned with soft, raw-milk cheeses like brie. This is relevant in Europe and some American States where these kinds of products are permitted. The rationale here is that, in a high-moisture, low-acid, low-salt environment, any pathogens potentially present in raw milk could multiply to toxic levels. That is why soft cheeses are not permitted to be made with raw milk in Canada. The only raw milk cheeses allowed in Canada are hard cheeses that are aged for minimum 60 days. These tend to be higher in lactic acid, dryer, and saltier, which, combined with a lengthy aging process makes the likelihood of pathogenic growth extremely low. Most of our cheeses are pasteurized, just like virtually all the cheese in your local grocery store, therefore, are considered very safe to consume for immune-compromised individuals and pregnant women. We make several raw-milk cheeses as well (Blue Claire, Caerphilly, Mt. Moriarty) and these all conform to the Canadian policies surrounding raw cheese production and are aged well beyond the minimum 60 days. Additionally, our cheeses are tested regularly throughout the production and aging process to ensure the highest quality. Having said all that, we are not health professionals and can only speak to this issue from a dairy processing and food science perspective. If you have additional concerns about which foods to avoid during pregnancy, speak to your physician or midwife.




DO YOU SELL MANURE?


No, we use all our cows' manure to fertilize our own fields.




IS YOUR CHEESE GLUTEN FREE?


Basically yes. However, in every batch (1600L) of Bleu Claire we put in approx 30ml of blue cheese mould. This mould is propigated in wheat nutrient and then chemically extracted so that the final product does not contain levels of gluten required for an allergen warning. See the below information for details.




CAN I BRING MY DOG?


Yes, you are welcome to bring your friendly, leashed dog around the outdoor areas of our farm. Please note, we have several unleashed farm dogs on the property.





Can't find the answer you're looking for here? Email us at info@cheeseworks.ca

OPEN EVERY DAY 10-5

MILK DISPENSER OPEN

403 Lowry's Rd, Parksville, BC

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