Deposited cheese remains in the jars unearthed during dig and restoration works held in Hoşap Castle in Gürpınar district of Van are thought to date back to 200-250 years ago. Dig and restoration works led by Van Yüzüncü Yıl University Department of Art History Professor Ass. Prof. Dr. Mehmet Top, continue in Hoşap Castle. Hoşap Castle built by Mahmudi Governors in the 16th century over the foundations of the castle dating back to Urartu Empire which ruled in the region between 8 and 7 B.C., is known to serve as a palace back in that period. Cheese was found in four jars in the kitchen section of the castle during the digs conducted by a team of 30. It was informed that one of the jars was broken as three others were intact. Digs held in Hoşap Castle proved that the preservation method of filling traditional Van herby cheese into jars and burying these in the ground, was used in the region even hundreds of years ago. Mehmet Top specified that traces of organic material was found in the cheese in jars buried with their lids closed, and the cheese was sent to university’s chemistry laboratory for analysis.
Nearly three centuries old deposit cheese is found in four separate jars discovered in the archeological digs held in Van.