Andy Swinscoe originates from Cumbria, and at an early age embarked on a quest to find the finest farmhouse cheeses available. After studying culinary arts and working for top cheesemongers in the UK, the QEST scholarship allowed him to carry out an apprenticeship in cheese ageing (affinage) from one of the world’s authorities on the subject: Herve Mons. It enabled Andy to become an expert in his field and apply these traditional principles he learnt firsthand to the farmhouse cheese industry in the UK.
Returning to the UK Andy set-up The Courtyard Dairy, a cheese specialist designed to champion small independent cheese producers and age their cheese to perfection. The shop quickly achieved success winning Cheesemonger of the Year (World Cheese Awards) and a runner-up in the BBC Food and Farming Awards for Best Food Retailer.
Andy plans to grow the business further and offer more support to small farmhouse cheesemakers – something that would not have been achievable without the knowledge he learnt in France, possible thanks to the QEST scholarship.