A person walks by long rows and shelves of round cheeses.

Gunn's Hill Cheese, Woodstock

Ontario’s best locally-made cheese

A person walks by long rows and shelves of round cheeses.

Gunn's Hill Cheese, Woodstock

In Ontario, cheese-making often runs in family with generations of knowledge, skills and craftsmanship handed down while new and innovative methods are adopted.  

Visit Ontario’s top cheese makers to sample and savour classic and new flavours of cheese. Some even offer tours of the facility or farm. It's a great way to better appreciate what goes into making your favourite dairy product.  

Northern Ontario

Fromagerie Kapuskoise

Producers of artisanal, pressed and soft cheese that are made with whole milk from local cow, goat and sheep farms.

With a nod to its northern Ontario location, the cheeses are named after local rivers and lakes like the Mattagami and the Kapuskasing. Several varieties have been featured in the CN Tower 360 Restaurant menu. Visit for in-store samples and tours.

Don’t miss: The Kapuskasing is a creamy cheese lined with vegetable ash in the centre. They also create limited edition, earthy-flavoured beer and wine-infused Opasatika cheeses. 

Location: 376 Government Road East, Kapuskasing

Thunder Oak Cheese Farm

The first farm in Ontario to specialize in a creamy Dutch-style gouda now produces over a dozen different flavours that range from mild to extra aged. All cheese is made from fresh Holstein cow milk from the family farm.

Pick up your favourite flavoured gouda along with a selection of Dutch products and gifts at the farm store. You can also find Thunder Oak cheese at the year-round Thunder Bay Country Market on Wednesdays and Saturdays.

Fan favourite: dill gouda.

Location: 611 Boundary Drive, Thunder Bay

Central Ontario

River’s Edge Goat Dairy

Milk produced by the resident goat herd at River’s Edge is used to create handmade goat cheese, yogurt and kefir as well as speciality soaps and lotions.

Shop at the farm store and inquire about private, guided barn tours where you can interact with the goat.

Great take-away: A Goat’s Picnic is great on-the-go, award-winning chevre balls marinated with olives, tapenade and roasted red peppers.

Location: 8102 Wellington County Road 109, Arthur

Secret Lands Farm

This family owned and operated sheep farm in the heart of Grey Highlands will fast become your favourite source of small-batch, fresh and aged artisanal sheep milk cheese.

Add a farm tour or organized farm experiences to your visit.

New additions: The new (aged) creamy Caciotta with Fenugreek seeds and the rich and textured Labneh pistachio cheese balls.

Location: 733792 West Back Line RR#2, Proton Station

Niagara Region

Upper Canada Cheese Company

Award-winning cheese made from pure, fresh and quality Guernsey milk and goat milk from local farms in the heart of wine country.

Tried and true: The rich and creamy Niagara Gold is a must for your cheese selection. 

Location: 4159 Jordan Road, Jordan Station

Southeastern Ontario

Wilton Cheese Factory

Wilton Cheese Factory was established in 1867 and operated as a Farmer’s Cooperative. In 1970 the factory was purchased by the Jensen family, who ran Jensen Cheese in Simcoe. The factory continued under the same name producing quality cheese associated with the Jensen brand.

Fun flavours: In addition to their cheddar cheeses, variety cheeses include hot pepper and onion garlic.

Location: 287 Simmons Road, Odessa

Glengarry Fine Cheese

This Eastern Ontario cheese maker specializes in artisanal hard and soft style cheeses made from the milk of Holstein and neighbouring Brown Swiss cattle and goats.

Award-winners: The aged Celtic Blue, a soft creamy blue cheese and their Lankaaster gouda style cheese are both multi-award winners.

Location: 5926 Highway #34, RR#1, County Road 34, Lancaster

St-Albert Cheese

East of Ottawa, St-Albert has been mastering high-quality cheddar since the late 19th century. The facility includes a restaurant, boutique shop, visitor centre and museum.

Don’t miss: You’ll want the award-winning extra old cheddar on your cheese tray and definitely stock up on cheese curds.

Location: 150 St. Paul Street C, St-Albert

Balderson Village Cheese

Established in 1881, Balderson has become a household name in Ontario for its fine cheeses. It’s worth the trip to the Balderson Village Store for the full selection of cheeses as well as other products like charcuterie meats, spreads and home décor.

Must try: Gift yourself one of the cheese themed gift baskets, like the Gourmet basket or the Little Taste of Balderson.

Location: 1410 511, Balderson

Ontario Water Buffalo Co.

Experienced dairy farmers turned their knowledge and passion to raising and milking water buffalos instead with the goal of producing the finest grass-fed, natural buffalo mozzarella.

Shop the Buff Stuff Store and inquire about booking a self-guided tour of the farm.

Highlights: In addition to the mozzarella, you’ll want to try the buffalo asiago and gouda.

Location: 3346 Stirling Marmora Road, Stirling

Maple Dale Cheese

As the team at Maple Dale describe, much has changed in the last century but one thing that’s remained consistent since 1888 is the great taste of their authentic, farm fresh hand-crafted cheese.

Visit the factory retail store for everything from cheddar breadsticks and daily fresh curds to specialty cheeses that are not available anywhere else.

Must try: The timeless classic of naturally aged cheddar is the star of the show. You’ll also want to explore some of the amazing contemporary flavours, including caramelized onion and maple bacon cheddar.

Location: 2864 ON-37, Plainfield

Southwestern Ontario

Mountainoak Cheese

Located in the heart of Ontario’s dairy belt and a key stop along the Oxford Cheese Trail, Mountainoak Cheese was founded on love for high quality gouda. 

Monthly tours of the state-of-the art processing facility are available so you can learn all about their traditional and modern cheesemaking methods.

Fan favourites: Black Truffle, Mustard and Farmstead Mild are all winners at The Royal Winter Fair Cheese Competition and the wild nettle is consistently one of their most popular gouda varieties.

Location: 3165 Huron Road, New Hamburg

Jensen Cheese

Quality artisanal cheddar cheese has been produced by the Jensen family for three generations now, having first been established in 1925. Their second location, The Wilton Cheese Factory is located in Eastern Ontario.

Cheese, please: Jensen is all about the cheddar, in fact you can learn about their cheese-making process called “cheddaring”.

Location: 37 Evergreen Hill Road, Simcoe

Stonetown Artisan Cheese

Following the traditions of the cheese-producing mountain dairies in the Swiss Alps, Stonetown is a multiple first-place winner at the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair for their signature cheeses.

Great selection: The Grand Trunk gift box is a four-pack cheese sampler that includes the award-winning Grand Trunk Gruyère.

Location: 5021 Perth County Line 8, St. Marys

Gunn’s Hill Artisan Cheese

Another favourite stop on the Oxford Cheese Trail, artisanal cheese maker Gunn’s Hill is located in a picturesque rural region with a rich dairy history. Visit the shop and book a guided cheese plant tour.

Tasty collabs: Award-winning Dark Side of the Moo is a mild, creamy Swiss soaked in Dark Side Chocolate Stout from Upper Thames Brewery and Beaus is a delicious semi-soft cheese that’s washed with a seasonal beer from Beau’s All Natural Brewing in Vankleek Hill.

Location: 445172 Gunn’s Hill Road, Woodstock

Monforte Dairy

One of Ontario’s favourite artisanal cheese makers, Monforte Dairy is known for their superb selection of artisanal cheese. Head to their Liberty Village shop at 125 Jefferson Avenue or find Monforte at popular markets like the St. Lawrence Farmers’ Market, Evergreen Brickworks and Wychwood Barns in Toronto. Or visit the dairy in Stratford.

Pick up: Waltzing Matilda is a flavourful water buffalo camembert, while their HodgePodge is a delicious, creamy Tomme made from goat and buffalo milk.

Location: 49 Griffith Road, Stratford

Looking for ways to pair Ontario cheese? Learn about Ontario’s established and emerging wine regions.

Last updated: March 22, 2024

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