Cheesemongers are categorically zealous. Their counters are their pulpits and they live to share their gospel. For some cheesemakers real cheese is worth fighting for, being brave for, even risking everything for. And the trouble is, if they don’t risk anything, we risk losing even more. Convenience-store shelves are heaving with generic ‘artisanal’ products, a celebration of mediocrity competing for your consumer affections using that A word to distinguish themselves. This dead marketing term is used by corporations and small businesses globally, so seemingly everything produced is being lovingly made by hand. It’s a pity the word has been misappropriated from those genuine cheesemakers who are true artisans. Kervella Cheese in Golden Bay is the real McCoy, determined to keep traditional, genuine aspirational (my choice of A word) cheesemaking alive. Kervella’s vocation is to create seasonal cheese using fresh milk from the neighbouring farm, combined with wild cultures and yeasts. For cheesemaking power couple Gabrielle Kervella and Alan Cockman, Love truly is sharing their love of cheese. Love makes a dreamy, creamy pillowy breakfast, lunch or dessert. The cheese is opened by cutting a lid from the top and spooning out the unapologetically rich and dense paste, giving a very promiscuous love nest that demands bubbles to cut through the fat. As it ages further Love becomes more complex, taking on earthier and saltier notes. In buying farm cheese rather than industrially produced cheese you will support aspirational farmhouse cheesemaking and help to ensure jobs in rural areas. And your kids will LOVE you for it. E iti noa ana nā te aroha – a small thing given with love. CALUM HODGSON – THE CURD NERD