All aboard the Cheese Barge me hearties!

Take a look to the sea, my friend. Mark thee well that ominous shadow on the horizon. For ’tis a ship, a man ’o’ war, and the sails carried on the waves do bear the crest of dairy. That’s right: the Cheese Barge is heading for London.

Originally planned for 2020 but put on ice for a year, the Cheese Barge is the cheddar-charged idea of Mathew Carver, founder of Pick & Cheese (that’s the one with the conveyor belt) and The Cheese Bar. The boat is a double-decker vessel, designed by an architectural firm, and it’ll be moored by the canal at Paddington Central. We are told that a ‘beautiful copper veil’ will cover the lower-deck dining room, while the 20-cover upper deck will feel properly alfresco.

The Cheese Barge
Photograph: Crilly Hargrave

Obviously the menu is more than just huge hunks of British cheese (although I’m sure they’ll serve you that if you want). Prepare thyself for: goat’s curd with lamb scrumpets and pickled walnuts; prunes stuffed with stilton wrapped in bacon; aligot, made with Mrs Kirkham’s Lancashire, served with fennel-and-red-wine sausages and braised red cabbage; a half-kilo Baron Bigod, made especially by Fen Farm Dairy for the barge, and served baked to order. You’ll also get to try their new-fangled snack idea: fried Quicke’s cheddar curds, curried and tossed in chilli honey.

‘It feels great to finally launch The Cheese Barge,’ says Matthew. ‘It was heartbreaking to down tools and not get to open our doors last year. However our excitement for this project has never waned, and myself and the team couldn’t be more excited to share this INCREDIBLE vessel with everyone. British cheese on a boat, what’s not to love?’ Amen to that.

The Cheese Barge will open on May 20. Reserve your place right here

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