Who needs Olympic skiing, bobsledding, or even curling, when there’s a whole competition centered around cheese? On January 21, 2018, cheesemongers across the country will compete head-to-head at The Cheesemonger Invitational in San Francisco.
The bi-annual competition is considered the Olympics of cheesemongering. Titan turophiles duke it out in a 10-stage competition of the senses—from aroma tests, to hefting and wrapping wedges and wheels, to pairing the perfect bite. The Cheese Decathlon: Now that’s something we wouldn’t mind training for.
Held at the city’s Public Works, the weekend of January 19 (when the Winter Fancy Food Show will also be in town), the Cheesemonger Invitational marks a fromage-filled weekend for the Bay Area. The event, in its eighth year, is expecting 30 cheesemongers to perform, for whom the Invitational is a time to shine—on stage, and not hidden behind the counter.
“On the cheese counter they are on stage every day,” says Adam Moskowitz, who masterminded the Invitational. “Without them telling customers more about these special cheeses, artisan producers around the world are at risk.”
While most of the competition is open only to industry folks, all cheese lovers are welcome at “Cheestlemania”, the Invitational’s closing party. Attendees can taste perfect bites crafted by competitors while a live DJ drops beats in the background. So get ready to get down and curd-y.
There’ll be more than enough to nosh, with antipasti and charcuterie from San Francisco’s beloved Bi-Rite Market and tons of samples from event hosts including Neal’s Yard Dairy, The Cellars at Jasper Hill, and Cowgirl Creamery.
While only one will be crowned Champion Cheesemonger, they’re all rockstars in our eyes. We love any occasion to celebrate the experts who steer us towards new favorites and challenge our cheese-loving palates. This event is the perfect peek into the industry, plus an opportunity to mingle with the makers behind your favorite bites.
Interested in partying with the pros? Tickets can be found at www.cheesemongerinvitational.com for $60 (take note: guests must be 21+).
Images courtesy: Ellen Cronin