Queijaria Monte do Ganhão
Monte do Ganhão is a family owned cheese manufacture in Alentejo, Portugal and they are specialized on sheep cheese. The beginning of the cheese factory dates back to 1975 within the Ganhão family. They started by making cow cheese to sell to neighbors and people closest to them. Later, when the owner's son António Ganhão got married, cheese became a real business for him, with sheep's cheese, a business that grew over the years.
His daughters, Célia and Dulce Ganhão, are now the faces of the company. They know how to do a little bit of everything, from milk collection to cheese production and are dedicated to the cheese factory 365 days a year.
At the moment, 14 employees work at Queijaria Monte do Ganhão, including the two owners. There are also around 2000 ewes at the service which, divided into groups, provide milk throughout the year.
"Sometimes it's not easy to work as a family, but so far we've managed to manage our relationships well and everything has gone well. In certain aspects it's good because we have more trust with each other and that makes it a lot easier. The secret? Dedication and love. When we truly enjoy what we do, the work develops in a different way." - says Dulce Ganhão
They first won a silver medal awarded in the National Competition of Traditional Portuguese Cheeses with a qualified name, that put Queijo do Monte do Ganhão at the top level. In recent years, they won several gold medals and a "Best of the best" award in major national competitions.
Everything happens in the city of Sousel, where the company has all the necessary infrastructure to give shape and flavor to the famous cheeses.
The small golden cheeses are distributed bith in Portugal and internationally. “We export to Macau, France, Luxembourg and Canada and many other places" – says Célia Ganhão. "We want to guarantee the quality of our product and we do not use additives or ferments”.
Monte do Ganhão produces half-cured cheese, three-month-cured cheese and reserve cheese (maturing for more than 8 months), and the famous D.O.P. (Protected Designation of Origin), which means that this cheese is part of a group of 16 Portuguese municipalities certified by the European Union and is characterized by being slightly spicy and darkening over time when in contact with air.
The Évora Cheese D.O.P. won the silver medal in the National Contest of Traditional Portuguese Cheeses with a qualified name.
"We competed for the first time and we brought home a prize. Was it a surprise? Modesty aside, we know what we do and we know the product, so we knew from the start that it had a chance to distinguish itself among the other participants." - says Célia about their first award.
If you want to taste the Alentejo, we urge you to try the signature cheese of Monte do Ganhão. You will find that slightly spicy flavor characteristic of a good Évora D.O.P.
This is a cheese that meets all the requirements to be considered a D.O.P., is produced according to all quality standards, from sheep's milk and undergoes a curing process that always takes more than 45 days.