THE owner of Niseko Fromage Noriaki Seki is a true craftsman who originates from Yoichi, a seaside town located between Niseko and Otaru. Noriaki started cheese manufacturing in Yoichi and operated a boutique factory there for five years before opening his boutique cheese factory in Higashiyama, Niseko in 2005.
Noriaki is a talented man – apart from being a cheese maker he was once the coach of Japanese Snowboarding team at the Nagano Winter Olympics. He has also participated in many Japan snowboarding national events.
Today, he skillfully handles the entire cheese-making process in person, from the mixing of raw products to the maturing of the final products. He discovered the cheese-making process because his wife’s family had a dairy farm and he was impressed by the fact that the more pedantic you are when making cheese the better the taste – a driving factor in the production for his high-quality cheeses.
Also, the cheese that is commonly available from Europe did not appeal to Japanese taste so the cheeses that are produced here are of a finely honed taste profile that appeals to a wider audience. Noriaki has won several accolades for his cheese-making efforts in Japan-wide competitions: 2003 All Japan Natural Cheese Contest – High Stake Awards – String Cheese; 2007 All Japan Natural Cheese Contest – Judges Special Award – Washed Rind Award; 2009 All Japan Natural Cheese Contest – High Stake Award – Niseko Washed Rind Cheese and Yama no Cheese.
The Camembert Cheese Soft Serve Ice cream that he produces between Late April and Late November is absolutely incredible and just one of the many culinary treats you can sample in Niseko during summer.
Another local favorite is his Crispy Cheese, which a favorite snack enjoyed by everyone and a must in any cheese platter or broken in a fresh green salad, it doesn’t matter what types of cheese you prefer, you are bound to find something here to appease your taste buds.
CONTACT // Tourism and Industry Division, Hokkaido, Niseko Town,
Aza Fujimi47 Japan. T. 0136 44 2121. Ask for Paul.