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Say cheese: Charing Cross Cheesery

Charing Cross Cheesery was born of Sue and Guy Trafford’s desire to highlight the wonderful range of artisan cheeses made in the South Island and showcase their own range of sheep milk products.


Established in 2012, Charing Cross Sheep Dairy produced sheep milk and diversified into soft cheeses, feta, halloumi, fresh milk, yoghurt, marinated labneh, and gelato.

An extremely enthusiastic market greeted their productions, as well as the nutritional, environmental and welfare values that underpin their farming at Darfield, and prompted a move from stocking speciality shops, restaurants and a farmers’ market to their own space in the centrally located Riverside Market.

“It suits with its emphasis on fresh and local, and we’ve added a range of products from producers milking a variety of species including sheep, goat buffalo and A2 cows,” says Sue.

Stocking Kaikoura Cheeses, Wairiri Buffalo, Barry’s Bay, Emilio Festa Cheeses, Karikaas, Cranky Goat, and others, the shop provides an opportunity to talk to knowledgeable producers, sample products and learn how best to store and use them.

“There are so many hard-working artisans making unique, crafted products. You can sense the love that goes into their goods”, says Sue.

Open seven days, The Cheesery also sells artisan cheese-based gourmet toasties and fresh free-range eggs.


The happy dairy

Sue Trafford of Charing Cross Cheesery says it felt like it could be a “cool adventure” when she and her husband Guy were invited to become part of the new Riverside Market in Christchurch. “To make the transition from food producers to food retailers was a real leap of faith, but it’s been amazing and so much better than we expected.”



Sue says that apart from providing the best in gourmet foods, Riverside Market has a good educative aspect.

“With our artisan cheeses, for example, customers can chat with us about what they like and take advantage of our in-depth knowledge to find something that’s completely new to them and they’d never find anywhere else.”

Purveyors of their own homegrown sheep’s milk, yoghurt and cheeses – of which their feta, halloumi, and the smoothly moreish labneh are proving irresistible to cheese lovers, Charing Cross Cheesery also showcases other South Island cheese and dairy brands.

“Being ethical, sustainable, keeping it local and building strong supplier relationships is important to us,” Sue says.

“It’s what being a true, traditional cheese monger is all about.”

A recent addition to their dairy fare is – wait for it – sheep’s milk gelato!

Coming in scrumptious flavours such as Amarena Cherry, Citrus, Coffee and Rich Chocolate, customers are more than curious to try it.

“We’re the only people in New Zealand making sheep’s milk gelato. Once you taste it, there’s no going back!”

Find Charing Cross Cheesery at Riverside Market on the corner of Lichfield Street and Oxford Terrace.


Ethical dairy: Charing Cross Sheep Dairy

Looking for ‘Simpler, Smarter, Kinder’ dairy food? Try Charing Cross Sheep Dairy’s stunning product range.



At the farm near Darfield, underneath the Southern Alps, the Trafford family produces a range of sheep milk products – yoghurt, kefir, soft and hard cheeses, fresh milk and gelato – from their 200 East-Friesian cross ewes.

The best interests of the sheep, the land and people lie at the heart of this business. The sheep are raised on pasture in a biological farming system. Their milk is smooth and creamy, has superior nutritional qualities to cow and goat milk and is highly digestible. It offers a unique and delicious food choice for the many people who struggle to consume cow’s milk products. It is highly versatile for use in a range of delicious products.

The farming system has a strong ethical base; with a low environmental footprint, lambs are reared by their mothers for at least 35 days before they are weaned, and no sheep are tail docked. The sheep are quiet and friendly.

Products are available at the Riccarton House Farmers’ Market, at Piko Foods, Fresh Choice in Merivale, Harbour Co-op in Lyttelton and in the soon to open Riverside Market in the centre of the city. This spring, an expanded range of gelato will be available.

Live outside Christchurch? Delivery can be arranged throughout New Zealand.

For more information, see or contact Guy on 027 644 596.