During our last visit to river Soča valley in Slovenia we also climbed to the top of mount Krn (you can read more about that in our previous post). We started our hike at Planina Kuhinja near villages Krn and Vrsno pri Kobaridu, where we had a chance to taste some of their excellent milk products (Tolminc cheese, fresh cottage cheese and whey).
Everything we tasted was delicious but Tolminc cheese was the definite winner in my opinion. This top quality cheese is made from raw cow’s milk according to local traditional methods. It is also registered as Protected Designation of Origin. It tastes sweet and spicy.
Production procedure of this cheese is strictly regulated and should result in a final product with a specific set of characteristics.
To be sold under the name of Tolminc cheese (Sir Tolminc ZOP), cheese wheels have to weigh between 3.5 and 5 kilos, have a diameter between 23 and 27 centimetres and should be 8 to 9 centimetres high. Inside should be lentil or pea size eyes - that is what those holes are called. Cheese has to be produced out of fresh milk, that was milked from a local breed of brown coloured cows. Cows need to be fed grass and hay from the local area. During production milk also has to be heated to exact temperatures.
Cheese made at Planina Kuhinja has been awarded various prizes for excellency for many years in a row. With such reputation and relatively small production, they do not have any problems selling everything they produce. In fact, their cheese is so popular, they are barely able to age it beyond the 2 months.
Since I had a chance to try their cheese of different ages I have to say I liked the 6 months old the best. It does tend to get spicier and harder with every month it ages, but that is just what I like.
It is worth noting that when grazing season is over, cheese supply also runs out pretty quickly. Every year they drive down cattle from mountain pastures in autumn when temperatures drop and those shepherd's huts stay deserted through winter months.
So if you are thinking about stopping by and have a taste of their products, you should do it during summer or autumn months.
Clicking on any one of above photos will reveal them all in a much more flattering resolution.