In Search of African Cheese

Lovely readers, I am headed to Africa for, you guessed it, a cheese safari. Some people travel to Botswana in search of elephants. I prefer the dairy angle. Rumor has it that artisan sub-saharan cheese exists.

My home base will be Gaborone, the site of The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency series by Alexander McCall Smith. Since I will be conducting my own private investigation, I have read several books in the series and found them to be delightful. Hopefully, I can take some cues from Detective Precious Ramotswe and locate at least one or two Kalahari cheesemakers to highlight here.

Botswana has two big exports: diamonds and beef. And where there is beef, there must be cheese. Right? South Africa, to the south, appears to have a thriving cheese scene. Here’s what I’ve uncovered so far:

1. There is a popular South African Cheese Festival and a host of  South African cheesemakers.

2. Klein River Cheese in Stanford, South Africa produces Raclette.

4. There are 12 modern cheese factories in South Africa. Many of these cheeses appear to be available in Botswana.

2. Fairview Cheese, a third-generation dairy and vineyard in Cape Town, produces a line of goat cheeses, along with Brie, Camembert, and an award-winning Blue Rock.

Wish me luck, and if you have any leads, please drop me a line. I will be back in early February. Look for updates here — hopefully, I have wifi. Cheers!



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9 Responses to “In Search of African Cheese”
  1. albert says:

    Oh man, how exciting! Bon Voyage!

  2. Amanda says:

    Sounds wonderful! I would imagine you’re going to encounter many (non-cheese) ferments along your path. Can’t wait to hear all the stories! Heading anywhere besides Botswana and SA?

  3. mike geno says:

    Good luck and have fun (and cheese)! You’ll be missed for the month.

  4. Fairview cheeses are fantastic. You might also try findign some Simonsberg cheese

  5. pablo says:

    You can always introduce local comunities in to cheese production…
    Good luck.

  6. Jessie says:

    I just stumbled upon your blog today and already, cheesy thoughts have overtaken this morning (and it’s not yet even 8…). I’m a cheesemonger & writer working in DC, and will be moving to east Africa in May with my husband for a couple of years – so I’m VERY much looking forward to all that you’ve got to discover! Cheers.

  7. Andrea says:

    I hope you’re having a fabulous adventure! Can’t wait to hear more. I just discovered your blog and am taking much delight in it! Thanks for sharing your inspiration.

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