The Dairy State was well represented during this year's World Champion Cheese Contest in Madison, as Wisconsin cheese companies took Gold Ratings in 45 different classes. The contest, which wrapped up on Thursday at the Monona Terrace Convention Center, featured over 3,600 entries from 26 countries--an all time high for the competition.
Cheesemaker Michael Spycher from Switzerland took top honors during the contest. Out of a possible 100 points, he scored 98.81 in the final round of judging with his Gourmino Le Gruyère AOP, a cow's milk cheese that has been produced in the region for the past 900 years.
The first runner-up in the contest, with a score of 98.70, is Gallus Grand CRU. That is a hard cow's milk product made by Hardegger Käse AG of Switzerland. Lutjewiinkel Noord Hollandse Gouda PDO, a mature gouda aged four to ten months, made by Royal FrieslandCampina-Export, earned the second runner-up position with a score of 98.66.
"For generations, cheesemakers have honed their craft with a commitment to excellence, and that shows in the work of World Championship Cheese Contest winners," said John Umhoefer, director of the Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association, which hosts the biennial competition.
Overall, U.S. cheesemakers dominated the competition, earning gold medals in 90 of the 132 contest classes. The Netherlands came in second among the countries with ten golds, followed by Switzerland with seven.
Besides Wisconsin, organizers say the most winningest U.S. competitors came from Vermont with nine golds, followed by California and New York, which both garnered five.
The World Championship Cheese Contest the largest international competition in the world.Source : USAgNet