Wisconsin cheesemakers, along with the state's yogurt and butter makers, captured the top number of ribbons in the recent annual competition of the American Cheese Society in Madison, WI, claiming 92 awards in all.
Of 1,794 total entries (a record number) entered in 104 categories, Wisconsin claimed 29% of all awards, an increase from last year, winning more than any other state or country for the ninth year in a row. The 92 awards for America's Dairyland included a tie for third place in the prestigious Best of Show category, as well as 17 first place awards, 32 seconds and 41 thirds.
Two Bleu Mont Dairy cheeses – Big Sky Grana and Bandaged Cheddar – tied for third in the Best of Show competition, marking the first time a cheesemaker has ever tied himself for this award in the competition. Several other Wisconsin cheesemakers also had outstanding performances, including Carr Valley Cheese, which claimed 13 ribbons, Emmi Roth who landed seven ribbons, Hidden Springs Creamery with six ribbons, and The Artisan Cheese Exchange, Klondike Cheese and Sartori each garnered five ribbons.
Wisconsin cheesemakers also had a very good showing in the new Cheese Curd category, with Springside Cheese Corp. receiving a first for their Cheddar Cheese Curds and Arena Cheese Inc. and Carr Valley Cheese Co., Inc. tying for second.
In addition to landing the most first place awards, Wisconsin cheesemakers swept four categories: Brick, Aged Cheddar – Aged Over 12 and up to 24 Months, Cow’s Milk American Made/International Style, and Grating Types.
Visit www.cheesesociety.org to view a complete list of Wisconsin award winners.