Sydneysiders! We’re bringing the High Country to you in a cheese and wine event on November 28th with our old friends Penny’s Cheese Shop and Brown Brothers winery! Join us to learn all about cheese and wine matching (featuring some seriously exclusive drops)!

Located in Potts Point NSW, Penny’s Cheese Shop is a one-stop-cheese-shop focused on highlighting the very best handmade and farmhouse cheeses from local and international producers.

We talked all things cheese with our friend and owner Penny Lawson, and this is what we learned:

What do your friends call you?
Cheese Penny

What are the top perks of your job?
Umm trick question? It’s the best job in the world, every day is a perk! Get to taste cheese every day and get to talk cheese with fellow curd nerd. Giving people joy through cheese. Also discovering new cheeses and telling the stories of the producers.

Favourite cheese and booze match?
Milawa Blue and Brown Brothers’ Orange Muscat & Flora — or Pecora Yarrawa and a Speyside Whisky

Penny's simple cheese platter with Milawa King River Gold
Image via @pennyscheeseshop

If you were stuck on a desert island what three cheeses would you bring?
Milawa Aged Blue, Holy Goat La Luna and Parmigiano Reggiano from Cravero.

Describe your ideal cheese platter:

I like to keep cheese platters pretty simple, cheese is perfect as it is! For the cheese selection, see above. It depends on when it is to be served… before or after a meal. Or stand alone. I would start with a baguette from Pioik Bakery, honey from Malfroy’s in the Blue Mountains, walnuts from Stanley and (if in season) a lovely crisp apple or pear, and if not; grapes or muscatels. It really depends on the cheese. If I was having goat cheese I might use olives from Alto or Mt Zero. Brie goes nicely with a cooked ham.

Penny cutting a wheel of cheese at Penny's Cheese Shop
Image by Jiwon Kim via Broadsheet.com

Tell us your Milawa Cheese story!
I would not be in the cheese business if it weren’t for Milawa Cheese… It’s their fault! I went for a job running their shop in Carlton North, and I hounded them until they gave it to me. They brought me into the fold and made me an honorary daughter/sister. I knew nothing about cheese before I started, but they introduced me to the curd and I have not looked back. There’s not a cheese ball I’ve missed in 17 years! I still feel like I’m home when I get to the crossroads at Milawa or when I taste King River Gold. I am one of the select few that have been into the Blue maturation room… Stepping through from where the Milawa Gold used to ripen…that transports me. Milawa Cheese Company & the Brown family changed my life.

Penny Talking to a Customer at Penny's Cheeseshop
Image via Gourmettraveller.com.au

Favourite Milawa Cheese & why?
Ooooh, almost as hard to answer as what is my favourite cheese. But… if pushed Aged Milawa Blue, I’ve proposed to it before. I call it my Fiancé!

Favourite Milawa Memory?
Some of them are a bit foggy on account of the Brown family hospitality. But any of the recovery lunches after the Cheese Ball, cooking with David as a sous chef preparing a feast for anywhere between 8 and 30. Playing Bocce / Boule with Ceridwen, with a glass in hand. Almost dying with laughter at most dinners.

Milawa Markwood Cheese
Image: Milawa Markwood via @pennyscheeseshop

Biggest regret:
When given the opportunity to name a cheese I didn’t name it Penny…. If you are lucky enough to try it Milawa Markwood is pretty gosh-darn delicious, but it might taste better if it were called Milawa Penelope haha!

Thanks for the chat, Penny! Keep up to date with Penny on Facebook and Instagram

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