World Cheese Awards

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Posted by Nibbler | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 24-11-2010

The World Cheese Awards are held by The Guild of Fine Food in the UK. They are held in conjunction with the BBC Good Food Show.  This year’s awards are underway now, Nov 24 – 28, with the judging having taken place place yesterday (Nov 24).

What makes these awards different to most cheese shows is that judging takes place in front of live audience. Most cheese judging is conducted separate to any other event and in controlled circumstances (temperature, noise, odour) to ensure that judges can concentrate on the cheese.

After the first round of judging the gold medal cheeses are judged again by another team of judges. These are then judged by a 12 person Supreme Jury to determine the World Champion cheese.

Although I have not seen the full list of 2010 awards, The Guardian newspaper has an article today on The Cornish Cheese Company’s win with Cornish Blue.

Here is a link to the article: http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/2010/nov/25/cornish-blue-world-cheese-awards

An intersection of my day job and my passion

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Posted by Nibbler | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 24-11-2010

Sometime ago I set up Google alerts to receive a daily email on all things cheese in the news each day. Today’s email highlighted an article on Warrnambool Cheese’s implementation of a computer system called JD Edwards. I was pleased to see that the IT company that was originally involved in the implementation of the system was the company that I work for Oakton.  The article quotes Warrnambool’s project manager ICT Ian Spencer as saying “Cost savings and better quality products are two of the benefits which come from the additional knowledge data.”

Hmmm, maybe Oakton will have another project with a cheesy company. At least they know there is one project manager that is eager to volunteer!

American Cheese Society nibbling through 1,462 entries in tasting competition (Seattle Times Newspaper)

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Posted by Nibbler | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 27-08-2010

An interesting article on the American Cheese Society’s conference and competition.

Business & Technology | American Cheese Society nibbling through 1,462 entries in tasting competition | Seattle Times Newspaper.

Cruising around the web

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Posted by Nibbler | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 10-08-2010

I love the Google searches that send me daily emails of items around the internet about cheese. It’s often amusing what turns up – not everything is about dairy cheese!

Below are a couple of links of interesting cheese related stories, articles or blog posts:

You never know what Google is going to find. I wonder what will turn up tomorrow?

Cheesefest 2010

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Posted by Nibbler | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 09-08-2010

I was really excited to see an announcement for Cheesefest 2010. Cheesefest is held every year in Adelaide, South Australia and brings together cheese makers and cheese lovers in the great outdoors. Last year the weather was beautiful and there was a large crowd that attended.

The public event is held on a Sunday and the day before the cheese show and judging take place. This is closed to the public and the judges come from many different food backgrounds. Kris Lloyd runs a tight ship and the judging is blind (no packaging or labels).

Last year I was lucky enough to steward at the cheese show. It was a lot of fun (and hard work) and I met some great people who are passionate about cheese.

I urge you to head out to Cheesefest on October 17th, 2010 if you can.

Sunday 17 October 2010
11 am to 6 pm
Rymill Park, Adelaide

Tickets on sale
from 2 August 2010
www.venuetix.com.au
Tickets are limited so book early online!

Burrata cheese

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Posted by Nibbler | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 10-02-2010

At the RAS Cheese Show I was introduced to cheese I had never heard of before, Burrata.  

Burrata is an Italian cheese made from cows milk originating from the Puglia region. What makes it so interesting is that it looks like a money bag or pouch made from stretched curd mozzarella and inside is cream and mozzarella. When the pouch is cut the cream oozes out. Traditionally the pouch is wrapped in asphodel leaves which can be used as indicator of the freshness of the cheese. Burrata can also be sold in plastic bags. 

Photo courtesy of Wikipedia.org.

 

The Burrata exhibited in the show today was from Vanella Cheese Factory. The taste was sweet and creamy and totally yummy.

So, having tried the cheese, it got me thinking. How do you eat or use Burrata? A quick search on google produced a couple of recipes. The recipe that interested me most was from the ‘At Home with Kim Vallée’ website. Kim combined the Burrata with vine ripened tomatoes, olive oil, aged balsamic vinegar and basil.  Although I would not normally provide a cheese recipe, Burrata in my opinion is the kind of cheese that needs to be used in a dish rather than eaten independently. 

For more information visit 

http://athome.kimvallee.com/2009/10/simplest-way-to-serve-burrata-cheese/

Cheese Tour of Southern Tasmania

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Posted by Nibbler | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 08-02-2010

Last year I was excited to join Claudia McIntosh from McIntosh and Bowman and several other cheese and food enthusiasts for a tour of Southern Tasmania. We left early on a Friday and spent the weekend touring around Hobart and it’s surrounds enjoying cheese at Grandvewe Cheeses and Bruny Island Cheese

For me the highlights were cheese related of course! I had been dying to meet the cheesemaker at Grandvewe as I love their cheeses. Nick Haddow from Bruny Island Cheese is renown and I was looking forward to tasting his cheeses in their prime. Often the tyranny of distance was not kind to Bruny Island cheeses after their trip up to Sydney.

This weekend in the Sydney Morning Herald, Carli Ratcliff’s article recounting of our trip was published. Even more exciting for me was the use and credit by SMH of my photo of Rodney Dunn from The Agrarian Kitchen.

After bonding over a common passion, we had a fun packed weekend of whisky, cheese and food.

Royal Agricultural Society of NSW Cheese Show 2010

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Posted by Nibbler | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 08-02-2010

The RAS holds it’s Cheese & Dairy Show  in February each year. Entries from both small farmhouse cheesemakers as well the big industrial cheese companies like King Island are on show. There are hundreds of exhibits every year from all over Australia.

This is the second year that I have stewarded at the RAS’ cheese show. Stewarding is hard work but fun. Stewards are responsible for fetching the cheese from the fridge, unwrapping and then cutting the cheese. Stewards support the judges as they assess and mark each cheese. Essentially, you keep an eye on the cheeses and judges, as well as run back and forth to the fridge alot.

Perhaps this isn’t sounding like too much fun, but a steward has the opportunity to watch, listen and learn as each cheese is judged. Although judging is independent (and silent) at the start of each class the judges confer on the first three exhibits to ensure that no judge is being too severe or too lenient in their marking.

Breaks in the schedule offer the opportunity to discuss the different exhibits and to understand why certain defects or flaws occur. Sometimes it is packaging, sometimes the cheese is past its prime. Other defects can occur if the cheesemaker has not stored or aged the cheese carefully.

The judges come from all over Australia and most have worked in the cheese or dairy industry in Australia for many years. Many have judged internationally. Some judges are from the food media or in the sale or distribution of cheese. (Of course judges cannot have conflicts of interest with any exhibitors). This year we had an international judge from France. As the French judge was in my panel of judges I was fascintated to learn some of the differences both in the presentation of cheese and in the judging process between our show and France. French cheese judging seems particularly strict and more regimented than the Australian system.

From 7:30am until 4pm each class of cheese and its exhibits were tasted, judged and marked. A full day devoted to cheese. My idea of heaven!

Cheese as an ice breaker

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Posted by Nibbler | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 30-08-2009

Yesterday my mum and I met with my brother’s parents-in-law. Although my brother and his partner have been together for quite some time we had not had a chance to meet up her family until now.

Taking matters into their own hands, rather than relying on the couple involved, her parents invited us to dinner.

As well as bringing the traditional bottle of wine and flowers, I decided to bring some cheese. I had just received my monthly McIntosh and Bowman cheese club cheeses and decided to bring a sample along.

This month’s cheeses were:

  • Chabichou du Poitou AOC: a goat milk cheese from Poitou in France
  • Jannei Chevre Cheddar: a young goat’s milk cheddar from Lisdale NSW
  • La Roche Mini Bleu: a cow’s milk cheese from Rhone-Alpes in France

I also brought some Heidi Farm Gruyere (Australian) and Quickes Cheddar (aged muslin wrapped cheddar from England) as my brother’s partner is pregnant (yay, I am going to be an aunty!!!) and can’t eat the other cheeses.

It turned out to be a great idea to bring the cheese. Everyone could focus on the cheese, ask questions or offer comments on which they prefer. The most popular was the Chabichou and the Gruyere.

Photos from Will Studd talkeatdrink @ Simon Johnson

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Posted by Nibbler | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 30-08-2009

Here are a couple more photos from the day…

Brie de Meaux

Brie de Meaux

Gorgonzola

Gorgonzola

Roquefort

Roquefort