The third annual Cheesemonger Invitational last Saturday was loud, sweaty, and packed. Forty five mongers from all over the country – and the world – began the competition with a written test that, by many accounts, rattled them. Serious questions like “what is the PH of raw cow’s milk” and “what breed of goat produces milk with the highest fat content” would have left me a sniveling mess at square one. Luckily, the contestants knew more than I do.
With a closed house from 2-6pm, the mongers had a chance to focus without the distraction of a roaring crowd. Even so, the nervousness was palpable, and competitors carefully monitored their beer intake (supplied by Brooklyn Brewery and Six Point) to avoid being felled by inebriation.
28 June 2011
What’s a little healthy summer competition between colleagues, especially two newcomers to Northern California, the artisan cheese, sustainable farming, and organic produce Mecca?
Now, I don’t want to mention any names, but a certain someone is getting a little fruity in the kitchen lately, and his initials are Will Fertman. That’s right, Will. I’ve seen your posts with your peaches on your pizza and other such Cali-Foodie adventurous combinations, and I must say: I like it. It jump-starts my competitive nature, but I do like it. I’m just wondering what the folks back home on the East Coast might have to say about peaches on a pizza...
So here’s some food for thought. Tonight’s entrée-sized salad at Lauren Berley’s Sonoma home:
The Culture Cheese Wrap Contest evolved from Elaine’s experience at the Cheesemonger Contest by Larkin Cheese Distributors in New York. Among many other parts of the event, Elaine thought that the cheese wrapping would be a particularly successful and fun idea for California's Artisan Cheese Festival. We created a two-part competition for both cheese consumers and professionals, giving every cheese-lover the chance to show off their skills in the art of the Cheese Wrap.
The competition proved very fun indeed. Congratulations to the winner of the amateur competition – Mike Lucia from Copain Wines! We hope you enjoy the prizes.