Gubbeen Farmhouse Products

The name Gubbeen is derived from the Gaelic gobin meaning the small mouthful which refers to the bay, west of Schull, West Cork on which the farm is located. Gubbeen Farm has been worked by the Ferguson family for five generations. Tom and Giana Ferguson currently make the cheese.

Fingal, their son of has recently opened a second business on the premises smoking meats and producing hams, rashers, sausages, salamis as well as planning his own range of pates, etc.

GubeenHow Gubbeen is made:
After the morning milking, the milk begins its journey into the dairy and the vats where starter culture and rennet are added.This causes the milk is set, it is then cut and gently stirred and with great attention to temperature and acidity. The curds are developed and the whey is run off.
The careful curing of the cheese involves daily washing of the rind which develops the surface bloom, giving the cheese its very own distintive characteristic flavours.Generally the cheese leaves the dairy conditions quite young and whilst they are transported and stored cool they are best eaten at room temperature, the ripeness being to everyone's individual taste-the more aged, the deeper the flavours.


GubeenWe have always been traditional in our cheese production methods and have a policy of using no chemical preservatives or anti-fungicides -only salt and curing methods learnt from the French and Swiss cheese traditions. If a cheese, when mature, smells wrong or develops some blue or grey mould on its crust, this is a reflection of its own character, not a sign of it having gone off in any way.
CHEESECARE Farm cheeses require more care than their vacuum-wrapped and chilled factory counterparts but they are worth the extra effort. All too often the most delicious handmade cheese, matured to perfection, is taken home and ruined. The easy alternative is to buy small quantities of cheese more often, and consume them quickly. However, if you live a long way from a good source of cheese you will have to find a good way to keep it. Although there are no rules for looking after cheeses, a lot can be done by observation. The best thing is to experiment and find a way that suits you, but remember, conditions change with the seasons. The trick is to find a place which comes close to cellar conditions: still air but not suffocating, humid but not too wet, and a cool, even temperature but not too cold. If you have all these conditions you have cheese heaven. If you don't, here are some guidelines.

TEMPERATURE Most cheeses keep best at 50-60F. With some exceptions these are the temperatures at which the cheeses will continue to mature, and this is the best temperature to eat the cheese. Fridges tend to be too cold, dry and airless, but when the weather is very warm you may have to resort to them. Remember to let the cheese warm up before eating. When cheeses are too warm they will tend to get soggy and exude oils, and when they are too cold they will be bland and lifeless.

HUMIDITY Drying is often more of a problem than temperature; the softer, moist cheeses being particularly susceptible. Relative humidity for most cheeses should be at around 80%. If cracking occurs, the atmosphere is too dry and the cheese must be kept more moist - either find a different room or store the cheese covered in some way; with a moist cloth, a cheese bell (or a clean upturned flowerpot) or even in a card- board box. Cheese is best wrapped in proofed paper
as this allows it to breathe. Cut surfaces of large pieces can be covered with plastic film but wrapping the whole cheese with plastic film will make it soggy and produce off-flavours.

RINDS AND MOULD Cheese which has a plastic 'rind' does not suffer from mould penetration, but, we prefer the flavour and texture of natural rind cheeses. Natural cheese rinds are nearly always covered with mould and it is this that gives the characteristic appearance of most farm cheese. The appearance of the mould ranges from the grey-green rind of the Cheddar to the flossy white coat of the Brie - types the latter plays a major role in the maturing and softening of the cheese. The moulds need air to grow which is why they grow on the surface rather than in the cheese. Sometimes a crack will appear in the rind which will allow air to penetrate and mould will grow inside the cheese around the crack. This is known as bruising, or if it is the blue Penicillium mould it is known as 'Blueing'. It is most likely to occur in matured cheeses - in the older Cheddars for example. If this mould is blue, it is worth tasting as it may be delicious. Blueing is obviously encouraged in 'Blue' cheese such as Stilton: This is done by piercing the rind with needles (stainless steel, not copper) to allow the air into the cheese and the blue mould to grow.
Cut pieces of cheese will soon start to form mould on their surface if they are kept in a nice humid place. This is a good sign and the mould can be scraped off and the cheese eaten. If the mould growth is prolific, however, the temperature may be too high or the storage place too humid and airless. The other extreme is cracking, which happens when the cheese is stored in dry conditions. It is difficult to remedy, but, if it has not gone too far, try covering the cheese with a damp cloth.

Cheese: Gubbeen
Type: Semi-soft wash rind
Milk: Cows, pasteurised
Size: 500gms & 1.2kg
Cheese: Gubbeen, Oak Smoked
Type: Semi-soft wash rind
Milk: Cowsl, pasteurised
Size: 500gms & 1.2kg
Cheese: Gubbeen, Oak Smoked
Type: Semi-soft Waxed rind
Milk: Cows, pasteurised
Size: 500gms & 1.2kg


Contact Information

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Tel : 028 28231
Fax : 028 28609
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E-mail: cheese[at]


Gubbeen Farmhouse Products,
Gubbeen House,
Co. Cork