Over head shot of a round serving board with various types of artisanal cheeses and two glasses of wine.

Go All-In on Local for the Holidays: Give the Gift of Ontario Artisan Cheese

Conventions and habits have shifted over the past two years and we’ve had more time to reflect on what we value and who we want to be. Making discerning food choices and adjusting our personal consumption habits have risen to the top of many lifestyle priorities. As we seek ways to favour quality over quantity, supporting local foods, farmers and makers seems like not only the right thing to do, but the common-sense way to fast-track our goals.

 

This holiday, many consumers - even the most ostentatious among us - are re-evaluating our gift giving strategies looking for meaningful and practical ways to delight our loved ones and celebrate local..

 

To save you some time wading through the many fine local food options - from cheesemakers and butchers to winemakers and apiaries - we thought we’d share some incredible gifting options from Ontario’s artisan cheese community. If you’re nearby, visit their shop to pick up pre-curated or custom cheese boxes and baskets or request home delivery!*

 

Glengarry Fine Cheese

Lancaster, Ontario
 

This incredible cheesemaker is one of Ontario’s best.  If you like to give high-quality gifts with a story behind them, you’ll appreciate that Glengarry’s Lankaaster Aged Loaf was famously named as the Supreme Global Champion at the Global Cheese Awards in Frome, England in 2013. Unlike other luxury brands, the price of their cheese is well within reach.

 

Recommended gift options:

- Cheese Bags

- Cheese Baskets, assorted sizes

Price range:  price $35 up to $125


 

Gunn’s Hill Artisan Cheese

Woodstock, ON

 

Tucked away down a country road in a region that proudly refers to itself as the “Dairy Capital of Canada” is some of the finest cheese in Ontario. Gunn’s Hill Artisan Cheese crafts a unique mix of cheeses, many of which carry the mark of traditional Swiss cheesemaking, thanks to cheesemaker Shep Ysselstein who perfected his technique in the Swiss Alps. His big bold cheeses like 5 Brothers and Handeck are complemented by the softness of his delightful Brigid’s Brie - something for everyone on your list!

 

Recommended gift options:

- Small, Medium, Large and Extra Large Cheese Boxes & Baskets

Price range:  $35 - $160


 

Jensen Cheese

Simcoe, ON

 

Jensen Cheese is one of Ontario’s oldest cheesemakers and makers of fine aged, flavoured and smoked Cheddars as well as mozzarella, colby and their unreal delicious cheeseballs in original, smoked and hot pepper flavours. Jensen has two locations; one in Simcoe and another in Odessa, which operates under the name Wilton Cheese Factory.

 

Recommended gift options:

- Small, Medium, Large & Extra Large Holiday Cheese Boxes & Baskets

Price range:  $31 - $110


 

Mountainoak Cheese

New Hamburg, ON

 

Mountainoak Cheese is a celebrated cheesemaker with an on-farm cheese shop selling their award-winning Gouda cheeses as well as farmstead quark and to-die-for Gouda cheese curds. They have a huge variety of aged and flavoured Goudas including Wild Nettle, Black Truffle and Chili Pepper. They are offering their popular Cheese Holiday Baskets this year for those lucky enough to get their shipping orders in by December 10th (orders for on-farm pick up Christmas Eve are open until December 20th).

 

Recommended gift options:

- Small, Medium & Large Cheese Holiday Baskets

Price range:  $35 - $70


 

Stonetown Artisan Cheese

St. Marys, ON

 

Stonetown Artisan Cheese hand crafts a wide variety of award-winning Alpine-style cheeses on their farm using milk from their own herd of dairy cows. From their flagship Wildwood and Grand Trunk cheeses to a Fontina that is just perfect for raclette, anyone who receives a gift of their cheese will be transported to a very happy place.

 

Recommended gift options:

- Small, Medium & Large Cheese Baskets

- Grand Trunk Cheese Box

- Wildwood Cheese Box

Price range:  $20 - $200


 

The Cheese Bar

Windsor, ON

 

The Cheese Bar is one of the best things going in the world of Ontario cheese delivery. You can visit them onsite at their beautiful brick and mortar shop or order their wonderful selection of Ontario cheeses for delivery anywhere in Ontario or Canada. They carry a huge selection of Canadian and Ontario-crafted artisan cheeses and other local fare, but the very best gift might be their Cheese Club membership. Who wouldn’t want a selection of Canadian cheeses, curated by owner Sarah Barrette, shipped to their door each month?

 

Recommended gift options:

Cheese Club - various levels ($54.95 - $79.95 per month)
- Ontario Cheese Gift Boxes
- Cheese Gift Set (local pick up or delivery only)

Price range:  $25 - $150

 

Thornloe Cheese

Thornloe, ON

 

Thornloe is proud to craft “Northern Heritage Cheese” in an enormous range of styles from their wonderful Devil’s Rock blue cheese and Timiskaming Portuguese-style St. George to their Hot Pepper Colby and famous flavoured cheese curd lineup that includes dill, garlic, barbecue and more. They also produce a range of grass-fed products including a butter you have to taste to believe, but be sure to place shipping orders before December 13th to make sure they arrive in time!

 

Recommended gift options:

- Gourmet Holiday Cheese Boxes & Baskets

Price range: $35 - $99


 

Upper Canada Cheese

Jordan Station, ON

 

Upper Canada Cheese is one of the most popular local food shops in the Niagara Region for a good reason. Their distinctive, award-winning cheeses include the famous Niagara Gold, Comfort Cream and Guernsey Girl cheese, all made from Guernsey cow milk from a local farm. They offer thoughtfully pre-curated holiday boxes filled with their cheeses along with premium items from other Canadian makers!

 

Recommended gift options:

- Holiday Cheese Boxes (custom or curated)

- Farm-to-Table Cheese Club

Price range: $60 - $80

 

*While many of these cheesemakers deliver locally and ship within Ontario, delivery rates and limitations may differ. Be sure to contact the cheesemaker directly to confirm the details. Also, most cheesemakers will customize a gift basket just for you - just ask!

Savour Ontario Kitchen
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Savour Ontario Kitchen

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