If cheese makers lived in Hollywood, this week would be the American cheese equivalent of Oscar week. Come Thursday, thousands of people will descend upon the fair city of Seattle for ‘Cheese-a-Topia,’ this year’s American Cheese Society Conference! Held in a different city each year, the ACS conference is a chance for cheese makers, cheese sellers, and cheese lovers of all walks of life to get together, chew some curds, and make some cheesy mischief! To learn more about this year’s festivities, tune in to Episode 33 of ‘Cutting the Curd’, where I interview Sasha Davies and Kurt Dammeier, the cheesy forces of nature behind ACS in Seattle.
The grand finale of the annual conference comes in the form of a cheese competiton, where thousands (literally, thousands) of cheeses vie for the coveted title of ‘Best in Show’. This week at Saxelby’s, we’re paying our respects to some delicious past winners! Come in to the shop this week for a single, double, or triple dip of ACS winners and get 15% off!
Wabash Cannonball | ACS Best of Show 1995
Capriole Dairy (pasteurized goats’ milk, IN)
Diminutive spheres of fresh goat curd dusted with vegetable ash and aged to wrinkly-rinded perfection. Toss these cannonballs onto the battlefield of the dinner table and watch the sparks fly! The bright, creamy, lemony interior is the perfect foil for summer fare or a dairy-delicious dessert. Tomatoes and greens, or honey and fruit can all cozy up to these light and vivacious bombs of goat goodness!
Pleasant Ridge Reserve | ACS Best of Show 2001 and 2005
Uplands Cheese Company (raw cows’ milk, WI)
It’s no wonder a cheesehead’s cheese would be the only two time winner of the ‘Best in Show’ honors at the ACS! Pleasant Ridge is a superb specimen of fromage, modeled after the famed mountain cheeses of France and Switzerland. Our wheels have been aged close to one year, and taste of grass, earth, cherries, and caramel. A perennial favorite of, well, just about everybody!
Cabot Clothbound Cheddar | ACS Best of Show 2006
Cabot Creamery & the Cellars at Jasper Hill (pasteurized cows’ milk, VT)
This ain’t your garden variety Cabot cheddar! Made from the milk of a single herd, these 35 pound behemoths are shipped up to the Cellars at Jasper Hill at just three days of age, where they are bandaged, larded, and put out to age in the cellars. A team of brawny Vermont dudes turns hundreds of these cheeses each and every day, ensuring that the cheeses mature to rustic, nutty, butterscotchy perfection.
In other cheesy news, did you hear about our Day A-Whey to Washington County? There are a precious few spots left, so if you haven’t called to make your reservation, don’t delay!
A Day A-Whey to Washington County!
Saturday, September 11th to Sunday September 12th
Tour Five Cheese Farms, Harvest Festival & Dinner, and Overnight Stay at the Rice Mansion Inn
After a summer hiatus, Saxelby Cheesemongers is ready to hit the road again and take you on a dairy-licious journey to Washington County for their annual cheese tour! This Day A-Whey really packs a wallop; we’ll visit 5 farms in 2 days, hit up a Harvest festival and dinner, stay at a gorgeous historic Inn, and whisk you back to the city by Sunday evening. Sit back, relax, and let us do the driving. All you have to bring is your love of cheese!
Saturday Itinerary: Arrival at Rice Mansion Inn, followed by catered picnic lunch. Farm tours at Argyle Cheese Farmer, Homestead Artisans, and Sweet Spring Farm. Local ‘Farm to Fork’ dinner at the Salem Harvest Festival. Overnight stay at the Rice Mansion Inn in Cambridge, NY
Sunday Itinerary: Farm tours and cheese tastings at Three Corner Field Farm and Consider Bardwell Farm. Picnic lunch at Consider Bardwell Farm.
Single Rate $300
Double Rate $250
Groups of 3-4 $225
To make a reservation, call Saxelby Cheesemongers at 212-228-8204. Reservations for this Day A-Whey are extremely limited, so reserve early! Ticket price includes transportation, hotel room, all meals, entrance to the Harvest Festival and dinner, and farm tours.
And last but not least.. This week on Cutting the Curd: The State of Cheese in Virginia! I chatted with Helen Feete of Meadow Creek Dairy about old-time music, flat foot dancing, and stinky cheese in Grayson County. Tune in and dork out!
‘Till next week, eat cheese and be merry!