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Oat of the ordinary

Oats have long been a mainstay of the breakfast buffet, but now oat milk is adding to the lineup. Yes oat milk has joined the ‘dairy alternative’ hall of fame alongside almond, rice, soy, cashew and coconut milk, except it seems this new option is trying its best to inch ahead of the rest.

Consumers are choosing oat milk for many reasons: texture, allergies, sustainability and best of all, it makes the perfect partnership with coffee.

It’s hard to fault it really… it’s creamy in texture, has multiple nutrition benefits and is environmentally friendly to produce. Makes you feel like you’ve been drinking coffee wrong all this time, doesn’t it?

Made through harvesting steel cut oats, soaked in water, blended and strained, oat milk has especially been admired for being environmentally sustainable.

It uses the least amount of water during its production compared to other plant-based milks and oat milk has a small carbon footprint.

Heathline raves about it online stating that “it’s naturally free of lactose, nuts, soy and gluten (if made from certified gluten-free oats)”.

Great news for the nut and lactose intolerant amongst us, oat milk provides yet another alternative for their caffeine hit.

Next time you’re getting your morning coffee, ask the barista if they’ve got some oat milk; you might just be pleasantly surprised.


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.