The Legendary Lithuanian DŽIUGAS® — Cheese Production & Values

Cheese Dziugas

According to archives, the beginning of Žemaitijos Pienas Company dates back to 1924. That year the Samogitian capital of Telšiai (the legend says it was founded on the seven hills by the giant DŽIUGAS) opened Telšiai Dairy. Its capacity was rather high back in the day, producing DŽIUGAS hard cheese, butter, cottage cheese, sweet cream and even whey champagne.

The products used to be refrigerated using ice, taken from the lake during winter, kept in the yard and protected from melting with sawdust.

DŽIUGAS® cheese is classified as a hard cheese based on three qualities: fat content, hardness and method of ageing. Džiugas® cheese is produced only in summer – from the milk of cows, grazing in highest-quality fields. This is what makes its scent and flavour special, reminding of a summer meadow.

DŽIUGAS® cheese production consists of 5 important technological stages

DŽIUGAS® cheese production - 1 Stage

1 Stage

The cheese is shaped in round moulds and then goes on to the cheese presses, where it hardens.

DŽIUGAS® cheese production - 2 Stage

2 Stage

­This is the ‘gentle hands’ stage. Following the pressing, the cheese is then put into rings and ‘rests’ in a warm environment, occasionally gently turned over – all done by hands. This unique environment is where DŽIUGAS® cheese loses its lactose. During this process it becomes even harder, acquiring a soft yellowish shade.

DŽIUGAS® cheese production - 3 Stage

3 Stage

Hardened DŽIUGAS® cheese then continues to travel to the brine bath.

DŽIUGAS® cheese production - 4 Stage

4 Stage

­The ‘firm hands’ stage. After the brine bath, the cheese is put on special, round and constantly turned sticks, created especially for DŽIUGAS® cheese. Turned every 3 days, the cheese stays there for several weeks. The turning equally distributes the moisture, colour and the correct shape of the cheese. It enables to ensure that the process is the same in the entire cheese wheel. The ‘firm hands’ stage takes place in a special ageing premise, which maintains the temperature and moisture, needed to develop the special flavour of DŽIUGAS® cheese.

DŽIUGAS® cheese production - 5 Stage

5 Stage

The ripening of DŽIUGAS® cheese involves complex fermentation and biochemical processes, changing all of the ingredients in the cheese. Three major processes that take place during the ripening, shape the basis of the structure, aroma and flavour of the cheese, while the white crunchy calcium crystals signify its age: more crystals mean that the cheese is more mature.

Cheese values

DŽIUGAS® hard cheese consists of only four ingredients: Highest-quality free-range cow milk, yeast, enzymes of non-animal origin and salt.

One 4 kg wheel of aged Džiugas® needs about 60 litres of milk. The colour of Džiugas® cheese is natural – the way nature wanted it. The milk is collected from well-groomed, healthy cows that freely graze in the nature. The cheese, produced during the spring graze has a brighter yellow shade, while produced at the end of summer – darker.


Eating cheese is not a problem even if you can’t drink milk. DŽIUGAS® cheese, stored at unique premises loses all trace of lactose.


This cheese is produced using only enzymes of non-animal origin


DŽIUGAS® cheese contains no additives or food colourings. The flavour – like the colour – is a natural gift from nature.


Džiugas® cheese is rich with calcium (1077mg/100g) and phosphorus (700mg/100g). These minerals are particularly important for maintaining your bones and teeth in good condition.


100 g of Džiugas cheese contains 33 g of protein. This is a high biological value protein, since it contains essential amino acids, as much as 50 per cent of which are irreplaceable. Protein is crucial for the majority of the body functions – this is the construction material for our muscles and particularly important to the stability of the immune system.


DŽIUGAS® ripens surrounded by music. The premises, where the cheese is ripened, silently echo with the symphonies of the famous Lithuanian composer Mikalojus Konstantinas Čiurlionis and other pieces of classical music. That is why it not only has a unique flavour, but also… a SOUL.


Due to the abundance of calcium and phosphorus, as you nibble on your favourite bites of DŽIUGAS® cheese, it creates a pH balance in your mouth, protecting your teeth from decay. Some say that the effect is similar to that of a toothpaste!


DŽIUGAS® cheese has no rind and is consumed to the last bite.


DŽIUGAS® sūris neturi žievės ir yra valgomas iki paskutinio gabalėlio.


DŽIUGAS® cheese is rich with fee amino acids, which are easily absorbed and that is very important for good and restful sleep.