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Somerset Life's food columnist Orlando Murrin visits the Cheese & Wine Shop in Wellington

PUBLISHED: 18:02 08 November 2012 | UPDATED: 22:18 20 February 2013

Paul de Ruyter, proprietor of the Cheese and Wine Shop, Wellington

Paul de Ruyter, proprietor of the Cheese and Wine Shop, Wellington

It takes something special to turn the head of Somerset Life food columnist Orlando Murrin, so has The Cheese and Wine Shop got what it takes? Oh yes...


Wellington booty!

It takes something special to turn the head of Somerset Life food columnist Orlando Murrin, so has The Cheese and Wine Shop got what it takes? Oh yes...

Tucked behind Wellingtons High Street is the foodie equivalent of Aladdins Cave: a glittering palace of fine wines, choice cheeses, breads, preserves, smoked foods, hampers and gifts. Think Fortnum and Mason in miniature with the emphasis on foods and products from the South West, and Somerset in particular. So much so that the shop was finalist in the Somerset Deli Award at this years Frome Cheese Show.

The town is lucky to have such a gem in its midst: proprietor Paul de Ruyter searched all over Britain (from Edinburgh to Ashburton) before settling in Wellington 14 years ago. It is a happy accident that he is originally from the other Wellington in New Zealand.

For me, the highlight of the shop is its cheese counter. Paul does not sell dozens of different cheeses only excellent ones, and his reputation is such that he has online customers from all over the UK (and as far away as Thailand). Just three cheddars, for instance Montgomery, Keens and (the new kid on the block) Westcombe. A remarkable young fresh goats cheese called Stawley, from just outside Wellington (6.75 for about 220g). A few choice examples from France and Italy, including pungent Epoisses and gorgonzola. Real gjetost (the fudgy Norwegian delicacy) for which customers travel from Torquay and Plymouth.

Plus, from this month until Christmas - Vacherin Mont dOr. This is a seasonal soft cheese from the French Alps, intensely creamy and aromatic and sold in a spruce box for about 11. The trick is to heat it in the oven, in its box, till the centre is melting, at which point you cut off the top, drizzle in some kirsch or brandy, and serve like a fondue.

Cheese lovers will find every imaginable cheese accompaniment dotted round the shop fruit pastes, biscuits and breads (baked on site) to say nothing of platters, cheese knives and many other stylish accessories for entertaining. And if youre looking for a wine to serve with cheese, youve also come to the right place. Among the hundreds of carefully selected fine wines youll find in the shop are over 20 beautiful ports, including Barra and Fonseca , over 20 dessert wines plus the legendary Pedro de Ximenez sweet sherry (18.99), to drizzle over ice cream or serve with Christmas pudding.

Orlando Murrin is chef and co-proprietor of Langford Fivehead, the award-winning boutique b&b at Lower Swell, Somerset TA3 6PH, www.langfordfivehead.co.

Paul does not sell dozens of different cheeses

only excellent ones


Wellington booty!



It takes something special to turn the head of Somerset Life food columnist Orlando Murrin, so has The Cheese and Wine Shop got what it takes? Oh yes...


Tucked behind Wellingtons High Street is the foodie equivalent of Aladdins Cave: a glittering palace of fine wines, choice cheeses, breads, preserves, smoked foods, hampers and gifts. Think Fortnum and Mason in miniature with the emphasis on foods and products from the South West, and Somerset in particular. So much so that the shop was finalist in the Somerset Deli Award at this years Frome Cheese Show.The town is lucky to have such a gem in its midst: proprietor Paul de Ruyter searched all over Britain (from Edinburgh to Ashburton) before settling in Wellington 14 years ago. It is a happy accident that he is originally from the other Wellington in New Zealand.


Paul does not sell dozens of different cheeses only excellent ones

For me, the highlight of the shop is its cheese counter. Paul does not sell dozens of different cheeses only excellent ones, and his reputation is such that he has online customers from all over the UK (and as far away as Thailand). Just three cheddars, for instance Montgomery, Keens and (the new kid on the block) Westcombe. A remarkable young fresh goats cheese called Stawley, from just outside Wellington (6.75 for about 220g). A few choice examples from France and Italy, including pungent Epoisses and gorgonzola. Real gjetost (the fudgy Norwegian delicacy) for which customers travel from Torquay and Plymouth.Plus, from this month until Christmas - Vacherin Mont dOr. This is a seasonal soft cheese from the French Alps, intensely creamy and aromatic and sold in a spruce box for about 11. The trick is to heat it in the oven, in its box, till the centre is melting, at which point you cut off the top, drizzle in some kirsch or brandy, and serve like a fondue.
Cheese lovers will find every imaginable cheese accompaniment dotted round the shop fruit pastes, biscuits and breads (baked on site) to say nothing of platters, cheese knives and many other stylish accessories for entertaining. And if youre looking for a wine to serve with cheese, youve also come to the right place. Among the hundreds of carefully selected fine wines youll find in the shop are over 20 beautiful ports, including Barra and Fonseca , over 20 dessert wines plus the legendary Pedro de Ximenez sweet sherry (18.99), to drizzle over ice cream or serve with Christmas pudding.


Orlando Murrin is chef and co-proprietor of Langford Fivehead, the award-winning boutique b&b at Lower Swell, Somerset TA3 6PH, www.langfordfivehead.co.



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