Visit to a cheese factory with a lingering effect…What treats do we enjoy during the holiday season?

It was necessary to take a detour off the main highway on our way to Penguin in order to stop at this popular cheese factory store and café, the Pyengana Dairy Company.

During the holiday season many enjoy a wide variety of special treats including cookies, cakes, candies and savory snacks.  With our way of eating we have few holiday options that will continue to maintain our low carb, sugar, grain and starch free diet.

However, there are a few items we can enjoy in moderation including natural hard cheeses which in general contain the lowest amount of carbs, lactose and insulin spiking ingredients.

Often the perception is that we eat huge amounts of protein.  Our way of eating is referred to as:  low carb, high fat, moderate protein (not unlimited protein). For us, it maintains our weight, good health and sense of well being.

This adorably named café is located inside the cheese factory building in Pyengana, Tasmania.

That’s not to say we’re exempt from drooling over certain holiday treats or can avoid feeling as if we’re entitled to something special during this festive time of the year.  Old traditions are hard to break.

I’ve only been eating this way for over five years.  Tom, who didn’t get onboard right away, has been joined me in this type of diet for over four years, except for those times we’re on cruises and dining in restaurants when he goes “hog wild.”

Surprisingly, on this most recent 33 night cruise, he tempered his choices making every effort to avoid bread and sweets.  As a result, he only gained a few pounds which he’ll easily lose without effort before we leave Tasmania in two and a half months.

Charm was exuding from this delightfully decorated and appointed cheese sales and dining establishment located on a quiet country road in Pyengana, Tasmania.

Only a few weeks ago when we traveled from Hobart to Penguin and after researching what to see along the way, the Pyengana Dairy Company was one of the top listed venues along the route from St. Helens to Penguin, on our second leg of the road trip.

Only a short distance from the main highway A3, we veered off onto a country road C428 to easily find the Pyengana Dairy Company.  Upon entering the café and shop, we were warmly greeted and offered to participate in the complimentary cheese tasting which was starting in moments.

We ordered our coffees and while it was being prepared, we tasted several excellent cheeses offered by .  But, one particular flavor caught our attention, the caraway cheddar, a creamy, slightly tangy cheese infused with whole roasted caraway seeds.

We had a lot of ground to cover and didn’t sit down for coffee.  Instead, we purchased two coffees, sampled some cheese and heading back down the road.  At that point, we had no idea how “hooked” we’d become on their caraway cheddar cheese.

In general, we’ve found Australia to have some pretty amazing cheese, particularly their popular natural “Tasty” cheese which is somewhat grainy, tangy and filled with flavor.

When grocery shopping these past two weeks, we purchased big blocks of tasty cheese, slicing it into bite sized strips which we keep handy in a plastic container. 

After finishing the one package of caraway cheddar we’d purchased in Pyengana Dairy Company a few days after arrival, we longed for more.  After dinner, we often make a cheese plate with a variety of cheeses as a special dessert.  With a few other cheeses we’d purchased locally, we were still thinking about the caraway cheddar.

After we’d sampled several cheeses, we couldn’t resist the caraway cheddar and purchased one package..

Last Thursday, we called Pyengana Dairy Company, asking if they’d ship the cheese to us in Penguin.  No problem.  They were happy to oblige.  Although the shipping and handling fee was AU $18.50, US $13.70 we didn’t hesitate to order 10 packages, the size shown in the photo included here today. 

The total bill for the cheese, including the shipping and handling fee was a total of AU $155, US $114.80 for the 10 packages which should last us through our time in Tasmania.  In our old lives, I could easily spend more than this amount to bake Christmas cookies or other holiday treats.

Any other holiday treats on the agenda for us?  Today or tomorrow, I’ll be making a double batch of low carb fudge.  For Tom’s upcoming 64th birthday on December 23rd, we have a dinner reservation at a highly rated restaurant in Devonport.  For Christmas Eve, most likely we’ll make our traditional surf and turf. 

Longing for more of the delicious cheese, we called Pyengana Dairy Company to order 10 packages to be shipped to us in Penguin.  Our shipment arrived yesterday morning.  Since we don’t eat typical holiday treats, this will definitely work for us. 

On Christmas Day, we’re trying a new recipe we’ll share if it proves to be as good as it sounds, Low Carb Chicken Pot Pie using almond flour for the top crust.  We’ll see how that goes and report back here.

That’s it in the treats department folks.  Its not much in the way of variety but certainly satisfying for us.  We hope each and every one of our readers who participate, have a tasty holiday season.

Be well.


Photo from one year ago today, December 15, 2015:

Fiji décor made from some type of small vines.  For more photos, please click here.

Comments and responses Visit to a cheese factory with a lingering effect…What treats do we enjoy during the holiday season?

  1. Michelle Burger Reply

    Originally from Wisconsin and loving cheese, I had to Google this type of cheese. I was surprised at the number of cheesemakers in Wisconsin that make this type of cheese. It seems to be a popular choice to put on a reuben or make a reuben dip with. I am going to have to look for it when I head up there for Christmas! Thank you for sharing!

  2. Jessica Reply

    Michelle, I should have mentioned Wisconsin in our post! Sorry about that! We often purchased cheese when we visited Wisconsin and even in Minnesota was able to buy many delicious Wisconsin cheese. Love your mention of the Reuben sandwiches. Now, if I can find a good recipe to make a low carb rye bread, we'd sure love that. Hummm…good idea for the holidays!

    Thanks so much for writing, Michelle. It was wonderful to hear from you! Have a fabulous Christmas and New Year!

    Warmest regards,
    Jess & Tom

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