We never need an excuse to “Eat More British Cheese” but Mathew Carver (founder of The Cheese Bar in Camden and Pick & Cheese at Seven Dials Market) has made it, even more, inviting with a month-long series of all-you-can-eat events. Taking place throughout August, the new bottomless cheese initiative is in support of the small scale cheesemakers hit the hardest by the pandemic.
The fun kicks off on Saturday 8th August over at Seven Dials Market where the infamous conveyor belt will be loaded up with the choicest chunks of cheese and piles of charcuterie. You’ll pay just £20 per person, which will enable you to fill up to your heart’s content. However, for those dining on a Monday, you’ll also be able to benefit from the governments horrendously titled ‘Eat Out To Help Out’ scheme, bringing the price of this bottomless bonanza down to a tenner! Result!
On the menu you can expect the likes of Rosary Goats’ Cheese in a mini doughnut with rosemary honey; Spenwood with cherry and amaretto jam and Fen Farm’s Baron Bigod with marinated sweet garlic. Charcuterie plates available to try include Crown & Queue’s Devils Mortar (described as a sort of ‘meat butter’) and Tempus Food’s rich Achari Salami.
Over in Camden, The Cheese Bar is bringing back their sell-out Bottomless Raclette nights every Wednesday evening, serving unlimited plates of hot melted Ogleshield cheese (an English version of Swiss Raclette cheese), served on top of Cornish new potatoes, Crown & Queue glazed ham and cornichons (with a veg option available too). The weekly event will also take advantage of the government scheme, offering the bottomless Raclette for just £9pp (normal price £18pp) and aims to support cheesemaker Jamie Montgomery, with whom The Cheese Bar has a longstanding relationship after he was left with tonnes of Ogleshield cheese when the majority of orders destined for London’s top restaurants were cancelled during the hospitality lockdown.
Since the government ordered the shutdown of hospitality and leisure businesses, the farmhouse cheese industry has been hugely impacted, with small cheese producers seeing wholesale orders virtually disappear overnight. As we’ve reported, this meant producers found themselves with a mountain of cheese that will go to waste if not eaten before the summer is out. Born from the desire to not see a morsel of cheese go uneaten, the bottomless cheese nights will utilise this surplus stock and help producers get back on their feet.
Finally, to celebrate the month and to remind cheese lovers just how important it is to “Eat More British Cheese”, The Cheese Bar has teamed up with illustrator Yeye Weller to release a limited-edition print. Available to purchase from the 1st of August and with just 100 copies up for grabs, the print, priced at £50, will include a £5 donation to the Got Milk fund, which works in partnership with FareShare to re-distribute surplus dairy produce to food banks and community kitchens around the UK.
Mathew Carver, of The Cheese Bar says “We couldn’t be happier to finally re-open the doors to our restaurants after a long four months! However, the struggle isn’t over and knowing our beloved cheesemakers are sitting on copious amounts of cheese, we knew we had to do something special to help them sell it! By taking advantage of the “Eat Out to Help Out” scheme and the VAT cut to make the numbers stack up on bottomless cheese, I’m so excited to offer our customers exceptional value whilst also showing support to the incredible cheesemakers we work with.”
Bottomless plates at Pick and Cheese will run Friday – Monday throughout August. All bookings are for a maximum of 1hr 15 mins and are priced at £20pp (£10pp on Mon with the Eat Out to Help Out scheme).
Bottomless Raclette at The Cheese Bar will run every Wednesday evening in August. All bookings are for a maximum of 1hr 30 mins and are priced at £9pp as part of the Eat Out to Help Out scheme (usually £18pp).
For bookings visit https://www.thecheesebar.com/