by Kylie Meyermann

It’s the cheese that has taken Toronto by storm. Cheese maker Martin Melendez has crafted a cheese that’s creamy and lush, with velvety veins that offer a subdued kick of sharpness. Devil’s Rock Creamy Blue Cheese is a tame blue cheese with a buttery finish that pairs well with a glass of Sauternes. It may be the only blue cheese light enough to be enjoyed in the coming blistering Toronto heat.

Melendez is the head cheese maker at Thornloe Cheese. Cheese. The cheesier is located in the small community of Thornloe, which is located approximately 440 kilometres north of Toronto on Highway 11. Melendez has been responsible for crafting many of Thornloe’s signature cheeses, including Thornloe’s award winning Asiago, which was awarded champion at the 2008 Royal Agricultural Winter Fair. All of Thornloe’s cheeses are made with 100% locally produced milk, unique to the cooler climate of the Temiskaming area. Devil’s Rock is Thornloe’s first artisanal cheese and there is already talk of Devil’s Rock’s award winning capabilities.

But if you happen to talk to the locals, they can’t help but rave about Thornloe’s cheese curds. I have been fortunate enough to sample the famous cheese curds, and I can testify that Thornloe Cheese curds are the best export from the rural north. The curds are available in white and yellow cheddar and are seasoned with BBQ, dill or garlic. They even offer cheese curds specifically catered for crafting the proper poutine (listen up, all you chefs using shredded cheese)! When I asked Melendez about these acclaimed cheese curds, he could only tell me that the aging and spicing process was a family secret.

If you’re lucky enough to spot Thornloe Cheese the next time you are out shopping, I would recommend that you take some home with you. Each of Thornloe Cheese’s products are unique and reminiscent of the stylistic flare of the north.

Thornloe Cheese is available in Toronto at Loblaws, Longos, Sobeys, Olympic Cheese and Pusateri’s.

Kylie Meyermann is a contributor of Good Food Media and grew up 20 kilometres east of Thornloe.