Enjoyment of the Czech speciality Olomoucké tvarůźky (also known as syrečky) – the pungent soft yellow cheese made in Olomouc is probably best described as an acquired taste. Children would describe the odour as akin to old socks forgotten in the laundry basket, although many adults enjoy a number of specialities made from the product. Even so, who would have bet that an ice cream made from the cheese would be a hit?
Czech Radio notes that for the first time ever (in the region of Olomouc at Loštice near Šumperk where tvarůžky are made) consumers this summer are enjoying ice cream made from their famous stinky cheese. They got the idea at a café and confectionery called U lišky Bystroušky and while most outsiders would bet that stocks produced would largely go untouched, or thrown away, they’d be badly mistaken: the pungent ice cream is reportedly selling like nothing else.
The owner of the confectionery Roman Činčara told Czech Radio more about the idea:
“We began making our own ice cream and since we are in Loštice we decided we should make our own flavor based on our cheese. Another aspect was that we wanted to offer the cheese in a novel form, different from other specialties offered by other venues. It is now by far our best seller, bought by both locals and tourists alike.”
He added that consumers had been buying the ice cream even when it has been raining outside and made clear curiosity itself played a role: those who hadn’t yet, simply had to try it.
What does the ice cream taste like? Reportedly there is a faint odor of the original product so it’s fair to say that anyone who likes the small yellow cheese already won’t be disappointed. According to the owner, not all will enjoy the experience: one third of the ingredients is the cheese and for some that’s one-third too many.
“It’s like with anything,” says owner Roman Činčara, telling the broadcaster the non-traditional ice cream was enjoyed by roughly half of those who bought it. Whether the seller will keep the flavour on offer even outside the summer season, he doesn’t yet know.
Olomoucké tvarůžky are the one original Czech cheese: the history goes back to the 15th century and the only place it is still produced in the area is in Loštice – a town of 3,000 inhabitants. The town is understandably proud of its long heritage, which every year draws visitors in the thousands.