cheese blog

5 Best American Cheese Festivals

February 11, 2017 | 0 COMMENTS

The Festival of Cheese, American Cheese Society:

The head honcheese. The Camembert in Charge. The American Cheese Society Annual Conference goes beyond simply gathering cheese lovers. This is serious business and aims to instruct the next generation of cheese mongers on how it’s all done while also recompensing the best of American cheeses. A wide range of activities and seminars cater to all level of cheese fans, from tasting to trying your hand alongside the professionals. The entire Festival is anchored by a competition pitting over 1,500 cheeses against each other, across a wide range of categories. All the competitors are exposed to the public on the final day of the show, allowing for wallets and waistlines to shrink and expand in inverse proportion. This year’s edition went off in Madison, Wisconsin to rave revues.

California Artisan Cheese Festival:

Set to go off at the Sheraton Sonoma County in Petaluma next March for its 8th edition, this Festival has become acclaimed for its ability to bring together laymen and connoisseurs alike. It fully taps into the region’s best artisan dairy products, by highlighting select cheeses and funneling 10 percent of all proceeds back into the community. The chance to sample some of California’s best product of the vine is also nothing to sneer at.

Vermont Cheesemakers’ Festival:

With 40 cheesemakers to call its own, Vermont is seeking to tell its flashier cousin, Wisconsin, to get in line. Having existed since 1996, this veteran of American cheese festivals has achieved a level of mastery helped by its regional focus. Every member of the Vermont cheese-making community contributes to making it a resounding success every July.

Oregon Cheese Festival:

Oregon will never do things by the book. Although still principally a cheese festival, this highlight of the local calendar also offers ample room to brewers, wine-makers and farmers alike. This festival is not for the food critics and gourmet snobs, but a chance for real people to sample and buy phenomenal produce in a convivial atmosphere. The annual ‘Meet the Cheesemakers’ dinner is a particular highlight.

Great Wisconsin Cheese Festival:

Sorry, Vermont, we had to include Wisconsin. Overcoming snide jokes such as “Live Brie or Die” as a suggested state motto, the grand Dame of cheese destinations puts on a show every June. In the wonderfully named Little Chute, cheese is given the full royal honours with a parade, concerts, and fairground rides. It’s been going for 25 years and there’s no doubt it’ll reach the full century.

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