Santa & Sparkenhoe


Santa and Sparkenhoe Red Leicester

I thought a lot about Santa Claus in my childhood, asking the usual questions – How does he get around the world, visiting millions of children all in one night? How does he know what kids want for Christmas? If your house doesn’t have a chimney, does Santa come through the front door? How many cookies can one man/elf/ultimate delivery professional eat? 

The last question is the one I am concerned with today. Whether it is Santa Claus eating millions of cookies, or any of us eating almost that many different kinds of dessert at a holiday party, sometimes you need a break from all the sweet. So what would Santa’s (or your) cheese be, if instead of providing the usual cookies and milk, we offered cheese, and perhaps a nice beer? I think the cheese needs to be something savory, festive, and not too strong because Santa (or you) will go back to eating cookies soon.

So, my vote is for Sparkenhoe Red Leicester. I’ve written about this beautiful cheese before, but if you missed that one, here’s a quick summary: It is an English cheese with a history that started in the farmhouse, then took an unfortunate detour into large factories where it withered away into blandness, until Jo and David Clarke of Sparkenhoe Farm decided to bring it back to it’s former clothbound, tasty self. It is also deep orange, which adds to the fun of the cheese. I think Santa (you) will love this savory, salty, smooth interlude in the cookie feast of the holidays. Add a nice porter and maybe you’ll get extra presents this year.

For the love of cheese and jolliness,