The Vermont Cheese Council (VCC), an organization dedicated to the production and advancement of Vermont Cheese, announced that Vermont cheesemakers took home 34 ribbons from 13 cheesemakers and companies at the 33rd annual American Cheese Society competition in Des Moines, Iowa last evening. In addition, a cheese named “Greensward” made at Jasper Hill Farm and aged in the caves of Murray’s Cheese Shop in New York City won third place in the prestigious Best in Show Category.This is the fourth consecutive year that a Vermont cheesemaker has placed in Best of Show Category. There were 15 cheeses from Vermont that won first place in their class, nine in second place and 10 in third place.
The American Cheese Society (ACS) is the leading organization supporting the understanding, appreciation and promotion of farmstead, artisan and specialty cheeses produced in the Americas. Since its founding in 1983, ACS hosts North America’s foremost annual educational conference and world-renowned cheese judging and competition. This year’s competition included 1,943 entries from 248 companies across North America. This year's theme "Cheese in the Heartland" was located in Des Moines, IA. The conference alternates each year between coasts and the middle of the country. Next year's event will be located in Denver, Colo., home of the national offices of the American Cheese Society.
A record number of Vermont cheesemakers – 28 in total – submitted cheeses to be judged at the prestigious competition this year, due in part to the VCC’s sponsorship programs for ACS membership and entry fee reimbursement. The VCC sponsored Vermont cheesemakers’ ACS entry fees to support their efforts in showcasing their cheese in a competition setting. This year, there were 1,843 cheeses from around the US in the competition. All competitors are given judging notes for their products which are helpful in evaluating the cheeses and in some cases, improving the quality of production of cheeses. The VCC finds this aspect of the competition an invaluable educational tool for its members.
Winning Cheeses from Vermont
· Jasper Hill Farms, Greensboro and Murray’s Cheese Shop, NYC: Greensward, Third Place, Best in Show.
· Boston Post Dairy, Enosburg Falls: Très Bonne, first place, Gisele, second place;
· Cabot Creamery Cooperative, Cabot: Old School Cheddar, First Place; Cabot 3 Year Cheddar, third place; Cabot Light Jalapeno Cheddar, third place; Crème Fraiche, third place;
· Consider Bardwell Farm, West Pawlet: Danby, third place, Rupert, third place, Manchester, third place;
· Fairy Tale Farm, Addison: Tomte, third place;
· Jasper Hill Farm, Greensboro, Harbison, first place, Moses Sleeper, first place, Winnimere, first place, Cabot Clothbound Cheddar, third place, Greensward, third place, Best in Show with Murray’s Cheese Shop;
· Maplebrook Farm, Bennington: Ricotta Alta, first place, Burrata, first place, Whole Milk Block Feta, first place, Smoked Handmade Mozzarella, third place;
· Parish Hill Creamery, West Westminster: Kashir, first place;
· Sage Farm Goat Dairy, Stowe: Fresh Chevre, first place;
· Shelburne Farms, Shelburne: Smoked Farmhouse Cheddar, second place, 2-Year Aged Cheddar, third place;
· Spring Brook Farm/Farms for City Kids Foundation, Reading: Reading Raclette, first place, Tarentaise, second place;
· Sweet Rowen Farmstead, West Glover: Mountain Ash, first place;
· Vermont Creamery, Websterville: Bijou, first place; Feta, first place, Crème Fraiche, first place, Bonne Bouche, second place; Crottin, second place, Quark, second place, Mascarpone, second place, Cultured Butter with Sea Salt and Maple, second place, Spreadable Goat Cheese, third place;
· von Trapp Farmstead, Waitsfield: Mad River Blue, second place.
For a comprehensive list of the 2016 American Cheese Society winners, visit CheeseJudging.org.
The state of Vermont, celebrated for its focus on farm-to-table lifestyle and Vermont-made products, including cheese, boasts more cheese companies per capita than any other state in the nation. There are currently 48 members of the Vermont Cheese Council making over 225 varieties of cheese. Cheesemakers range size from producers for local farmers markets to producers selling in regional, national and international markets. Cheesemaking represents 650 million dollars in revenue for Vermont companies.
The 2016 ACS competition saw 13 Vermont cheesemakers awarded 35 ribbons, including Best of Show third place finish for Greensward created by Jasper Hill Farm in Greensboro, VT in conjunction with Murray’s Cheese Shop in New York City.
The Vermont Cheese Council is a statewide membership based organization with 48 principal cheese producing members and over 20 associate members. The VCC is committed to promoting the advancement and quality of Vermont cheese through promotion, education and strong peer to peer support. The organization has been in existence since 1992. For more information, please contact: Tom Bivins, Executive Director at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 802-451-8564 or visit the Vermont Cheese Council website at www.vtcheese.com.