Aging is the key
After three days at the dairy, the cheeses are transported to the dairy’s cathedral-like storage warehouse in Ånäset to ripen. Here they are stored for at least 14 months to mature and develop their unique flavors and aromas. To determine if the cheeses are ready, samples are removed using a tool called a cheese trier, which cheese master Thomas Rudin then assesses with his experienced palate, sense of smell, sight and touch. The cheeses are only ready when they have been approved based on taste, smell, texture, consistency and appearance.
“Each curd is unique and requires a lot of hands-on care. The milk itself is a natural raw material that varies with the seasons. Making Västerbottensost takes up a lot of my time and is a big part of my life”, says cheese master Thomas Rudin, who is one of only a few people alive who knows the secret recipe for Västerbottensost.