In order to finish the cheese aging process closer to its stores, Wegmans Food Markets has opened a 12,300-square-foot cheese cave facility.
The high-tech facility will allow Wegmans to produce a consistent product similar to the way cheese is aged, or ripened, in Europe.
The retailer will be able to ripen up to eight varieties of soft cheeses, like Brie and Camembert, or washed-rind varieties, like Bourboned Pie d’Angloys, in separate “caves” within the facility.
Wegmans said it expects its cheese caves to be a “game changer” for U.S. artisanal cheeses.
“Our customers will get a cheese that’s absolutely perfect, with the taste and texture they prefer, every time,” Cathy Gaffney, director of specialty cheeses, deli and kosher deli, said in a press release.
“Building the Cheese Caves lets us take our commitment to customers who enjoy premium, artisanal cheese to the next level. In the last 10 years, the interest customers have shown in the world’s best cheeses has grown phenomenally.”
Eric Meredith, a trained chef and registered dietitian, will oversee the cheese aging process. Over the next three years, Wegmans expects to grow the staff to seven.
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