Mighty Mimolette & Yummy Yarg

Yesterday, while my cousin, Rubi, & I were in Edinburgh, we visited one of my favorite places, Iain Mellis’s cheese shop, better known as “Smellis”, because the aroma wafting out its doors is certainly… um, “fragant”!

ctmy30-smellis!We had been invited to join friends for a casual supper and wanted to arrive with something delicious to share. Right away, I spied the Mimolette, for its color is so much stronger than the average pale gold of the majority of cheeses on display.

ctmy31-smellis spread

I know in the past I have had this cheese and in fact, I gave it as middle name to Gouda’s child, Derby, when she was being cheesened. I will admit at the time that I didn’t know about the mites involved in the making of this cheese! And I’m not sure if I will share this new found information with our dinner hosts, or with li’l Miss Derby…

ctmy33-dead man's skull cheeseBut it is certainly an interesting cheese with its bright orange color that contrasts against the crusty rind. The shop girl helping us told us that Mimolette had earned the nickname, “dead man’s skull” as a result of this unique trait.

ctmy32-handmade oatcakes & mimmoletteCrackers, as Wallace would point out, are essential to cheese enjoyment, so I selected some oatcakes. They had a definite rough look, but when I queried whether we had chosen a good pair, we were told the wonderful history of this company. Adamson’s had been making their oatcakes by hand for years but at some point, they decided to modernize to machine-made ones. Well, neither the staff nor their oatcake-lovin’ customers were satisfied with the result, so Adamson’s returned to their old fashioned, but just right, methods, and everyone is happy!


Rubi lives in Linlithgow, about 20 miles outside Edinburgh. I lived in this small town, too, for a spell about 8 years ago. During that time, I discovered this lovely Cornish cheese. I believe I initially was drawn to it, merely because its name, Yarg, reminded me of the goofy henchman’s utterance in Hot Fuzz of “Yarrrp“. Aside from that fun association, the cheese is quite tasty.
ctmy35-count the nettle leaves

As you can see the cheese is wrapped in nettle leaves. Rubi’s friend, Lavistown, worried that the leaves might sting his mouth, but I assured him they would not. While they add a flavor, it’s not a strong one at all. In fact, I’d say this cheese is on the mild side, so perhaps it’s the exoticism of the leaves-as-rind that keeps drawing me back to it. In the shop where I purchased it, the attendant remarked that I was the second person today to request this cheese. And I encouraged her to try it!

OK, that’s lower Scotland-by-cheese, I’ll report back if I get up to any further cheesiness down south…


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