Northland's cheese-making Rosevear brothers have an unusual problem: They're running out of space for trophies.
Family business Mahoe Farmhouse Cheese has won yet another title in the New Zealand Champions of Cheese competition with its Very Old Edam, bagging the supreme champion award in the mid-sized producer category.
The accolade is welcome but it does means the brothers will have to find space in their shop and cheesery at Oromahoe, on State Highway 10 south of Kerikeri, to display another trophy.
Head cheesemaker Jake Rosevear admitted he had lost track of the number of awards the family had won.
Their Very Old Edam, which is aged for a minimum of one year, won the supreme award four years in a row from 2012-15.
Last year — just to prove they can excel in more than just Dutch-style cheeses — they took home the supreme award for their Mahoe Blue while in 2019 they bagged the supreme award for their Cumin Gouda.
And so the list of wins goes on, at least as far back as 2000 when their Very Old Edam first took out the top award.
Jesse Rosevear put their success down to his brother being ''a really good cheesemaker''.
''We've done it for 35 years. It takes that long to refine a recipe and really understand it, learn about seasonal differences in the milk and adjust accordingly.''
Jake said consistent recognition for their Very Old Edam was ''quite satisfying'', also for the cheese's fans around the country.
''I feel like it's our best cheese so I really love it that it gets recognised,'' he said.
The brothers have diversified in recent years into yoghurts and quark, while Jesse can't make enough of his natural-rind, European-style mountain cheese to keep up with demand.
This year's awards were also a triumph for Whangārei's Grinning Gecko Cheese Company, with Clara Perry (nee Autet) winning the Aspiring Cheesemaker title.
Clara grew up in Kerikeri, gained a Bachelor of Science in food science and nutrition at Auckland University, and started at Grinning Gecko two and a half years ago.
She was trained by Zev Kaka-Holtz, who won the Aspiring Cheesemaker Award in 2017, and is a team leader responsible for business administration as well as being a cheesemaker.
''I'm loving my job, I find it really diverse and fulfilling.''
The award confirmed for her that she'd chosen the right path. Despite being immersed in cheese-making for a few years it had lost none of its appeal.
''All cheeses start very similar but end up in a multitude of different colours, textures and flavours. That's fascinating to me, even now.''
Grinning Gecko owner Catherine McNamara said Clara was very observant and passionate about her role and had a great feel for cheese making.
''It goes to show that even a small team like ours is able to stand up on a national, and international level, and show what we are capable of up here in Te Tai Tokerau.''
Grinning Gecko also won the washed-rind category for its Kau Piro ('stinky cow') cheese.
The awards were presented in Hamilton on May 5.
Mahoe Farmhouse Cheese was started in 1986 by Bob and Anna Rosevear with cheesemaker Tony van Stokkum. Jake Rosevear has been head cheesemaker since 2005.
Another brother, Tim, produces the organic milk used to make the cheese.