As the home of Canada’s dairy capital, Oxford County is also home to 24 deliciously curated stops across Oxford County. These tasty locations each feature a local cheese, dairy product or other cheese-related offerings for visitors to experience.
Celebrating Oxford’s rich dairy heritage, those who travel the trail can take part in cheese factory tours, wander museums, try decadent chocolate and of course, go home with oodles of mouth-watering cheese. The Oxford Cheese Trail offers curated itineraries for the family, for a couples romantic getaway and for a weekend spent touring with friends.
Meet a few of Oxford’s Cheese Makers
The beginning of Bright Cheese and Butter dates back to 1874 when a group of local farmers decided to establish a cheese factory to turn surplus milk into cheddar. Over 140 years later, they are still producing award-winning cheese at their 1800s factory in Bright, Ontario. To this day, Bright Cheese is well known for its all-natural, naturally-aged cheese made with 100% local milk, including aged cheddars, Asiago, Colby, Monterey jack, feta, Havarti, and delicious squeaky curds.
Gunn’s Hill Artisan Cheese is an artisan cheese plant and specializes in crafting cheeses using top quality milk from the family’s farm across the field. The cheeses produced here are unique although you can taste the Swiss influence from techniques and recipes owner Shep Ysselstein learned while making cheese in the Swiss Alps. Gunn’s Hill offerings include 5 Brothers, Oxford’s Harvest, Tipsy, Handeck, as well as fresh curds each Friday. Visitors are welcome to visit and experience the area, learn about dairy farming and local agriculture, book ahead for a tour and of course, enjoy delicious cheeses.
The van Bergeijk Family moved to Canada in 1996, after studying at the renowned cheesemaker’s school in Gouda, Holland, and running their own dairy farm. They focused on the art they had always loved: farming and making artisan cheese. Today, Mountainoak Cheese is a modern, state-of-the-art processing plant that allows the family to continue the tradition of great-tasting, high-quality, Gouda-style cheeses made with high-quality, fresh milk from their own dairy cows. They have 18 flavours of gouda, including Black Truffle, and Celery, as well as their award-winning Farmstead Premium GOLD.
Tap into delicious craft beer at Oxford County’s only craft brewery. With several house brews and a few guest taps each week, there’s always a new way to enjoy a pint. This brewery uses exclusively local ingredients, perfectly pairing a charcuterie board with local cheeses to suit your crisp flight of craft beers. Take this taste of Oxford home and grab a growler on your way out the door.
#TryTheTrail yourself! See more about the Oxford Cheese Trail in our Love Local Food magazine.
Shannon’s the newest addition to the Love Local Food team and loves every second in her role as Food Marketing Strategist. When she’s not drooling over delicious food, you can likely catch her at local concerts and international music festivals.