CHEESE TRAIL E X P L O R I N G T H E Oxford County’s mammoth culinary tourism attraction

S ummer will be here soon and that means trips to the beach and baseball games are sure to fol- low. But if you’re ready for a differ- ent kind of adventure, why not give Oxford County’s Cheese Trail a try. With more than 20 stops from Woodstock to Tillsonburg, the Cheese Trail is a nibbling daytrip- per’s delight. “Culinary tourism is all the rage right now,” explains Tourism Ox- ford’s Meredith Maywood. “The Cheese Trail is a fun, tasty way to explore Oxford County’s back roads and hidden gems.”

As you might expect, there are several award-winning artisan chee- semakers on the trail—including Gunn’s Hill Artisan Cheese, Bright Cheese and Butter, and Mountai- noak Cheese. However, you’ll also discover a number of unique res- taurants, shops and historical attrac- tions as well. “The trail has been designed so that each stop is no more than 20 minutes away from the next,” says Maywood. “Visitors can choose the stops they want to visit depending on how much time is available and what they would like to see.”

In the Tillsonburg area, the Cheese Trail will lead you to an in- spired lunch at The Cup and Cake, followed by visits to Coyles Country Store, Sundown Farm Market and Annandale NHS. “Oxford County is known for dairy,” explains Maywood. “Believe it or not, 286,000,000 litres of milk are produced here annually. That’s 1.4 billion glasses of milk!” In the 1800s, there were 98 cheese factories in Oxford County alone, not to mention those in neighbour- ing Elgin and Norfolk. “As early as 1867 therewere cheese factories operating in Springford and Brownsville,” says Scott Gillies, curator of the Ingersoll Cheese and Agricultural Museum. “The one in Springford operated until 1950 mak- ing it the longest running factory in South Norwich Township. The Brownsville Cheese Factory started in May 1867 and claimed to be the first ‘joint stock’ cheese company in Canada. There were also two differ- ent cheese factories in the Delmer area.” Dig deeper and you’ll soon find that nearly every four-corner hamlet in the greater Tillsonburg area had a cheese factory at one time, including Eden, Corinth, and Culloden.


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