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From pasture to plate: Delicious holiday gift ideas star local Gouda!

Looking for the perfect gift for those hard-to-please at Christmas? Why not please them with cheese?
A gift basket from Sylvan Star Cheese – a great gift for that special someone or to say “gouda job” at the holidays. Photo courtesy Sylvan Star Cheese

Looking for the perfect gift for those hard-to-please at Christmas? Why not please them with cheese?

Sylvan Star Cheese in Sylvan Lake Alberta has the perfect gift basket made up of its locally made cheese, with some other Canadian goodies like honey, mustard and maple syrup, added to suit every taste and budget.

The cheese is Gouda, made from locally sourced whole milk, using recipes handed down from the previous owners who have been making award-winning cheese in Sylvan Lake for more than 20 years. Art Snoek and his wife, Jennifer, took over the operation earlier this year. But despite being new owners, they are not unripened cheese makers.

Art, a.k.a. the Big Cheese, is a sixth-generation cheesemaker from the Gouda area of Holland. It was his family’s way of making a living in Holland and he wanted to do the same in Canada when he moved here six years ago. He worked on dairy farms and started making his own cheese in Alberta. Word-of-mouth soon connected him with the previous owner of Sylvan Star who was looking to retire. And cheese history was made.

Sylvan Star’s gift baskets range from $50 to $200 depending on what you want in them. There are ready-made baskets that can be picked up at the store. Or you can order your own baskets.

The only hard part will be deciding from the more than 25 varieties of cheese available.

There’s the standard unflavoured goudas in a variety of ages from mild, to medium to grizzly and old grizzly, the oldest cheese in the barn, aged from two to nine years.

There are also flavoured goudas like Beer with Mustard, Pesto, Onion and Garlic and Coconut (hmm hmm!). Or for those who like it hot, treat them to Smoked Chili Gouda.

The options are limitless with something to suit every cheese lover (and who doesn’t love cheese?)

And all the cheeses are made with no additives or antibiotics.


Drop by the factory to pick up a basket or two that are ready to go. Or call or email to order your baskets.

Sylvan Star will ship anywhere in Canada

Call 403-340-1560 or email

And when those Christmas photos are taken everyone will be saying “Cheese!”

Visit for more details or follow them on Facebook or Instagram.

From pasture to plate.