SOURCE: American Cheese Soceity

American Cheese Soceity

August 19, 2009 10:10 ET

Rogue River Blue Judged Best Cheese in North America at American Cheese Society's 2009 Judging and Competition

LOUISVILLE, KY--(Marketwire - August 19, 2009) - Rogue Creamery in Central Point, OR was named "Best of Show" for its Rogue River Blue at the 25th Annual American Cheese Society (ACS) Judging and Competition on Friday, August 7. Results were announced at the Hilton Austin, site of this year's annual conference.

"We are honored, grateful and thankful for our team. We bring so many people together to create this cheese and they do a wonderful job. I'm really proud of them. I'm also thankful for all the people who support us and enjoy our cheese. Without them we wouldn't be doing it," said Cary Bryant, co-owner of Rogue Creamery.

Rogue Creamery has won numerous trophies and awards, including World's Best Blue Cheese at the World Cheese Awards in London, a first for a U.S. creamery. The creamery's long list of accomplishments also includes the coveted Best New Product in the World Award for Smokey Blue at the National Association for the Specialty Food Trade (NASFT) Food Show in New York. They have garnered more than four trophies and 30 medals and awards.

Other noteworthy winners include second place winner Cowgirl Creamery's Red Hawk. Third place was a tie between Carr Valley Cheese's Cave Aged Mellage and Consider Bardwell Farm's Rupert. The competition's expert judges, drawn from academia and industry, select "Best of Show" and second and third place from among the blue-ribbon winners.

Out of 314 ribbons awarded, the state of Wisconsin scored the most ribbons with 92 and California came in second with 45. Cheesemakers in the state of Vermont captured 32 ribbons.

"We had a record turnout with 1,327 entries this year from 197 companies. We saw surges in blue cheeses and farmstead cheeses. Goat cheeses, both fresh and aged, were up dramatically. We had 32 states represented this year, plus three Canadian provinces and -- a first this year with entries from the State of Mexico. In these tougher times, cheesemakers are hoping a ribbon will be a marketing tool," said David Grotenstein, chairman of the Judging and Competition Committee and director of purchasing and operations with Garden of Eden Gourmet markets in New York and New Jersey.

David Gremmels, president of the American Cheese Society and co-owner of Rogue Creamery in Central Point, OR said, "The judging and competition results including judges' comments on score sheets are hugely important to cheesemakers. The cheeses awarded a ribbon will be the focus of a lot of attention from retailers and can help vault a little-known cheese into the limelight. The competition really highlights the emerging trends in American artisan cheese."

The conference -- a gathering of cheesemakers, academicians, enthusiasts, marketers, distributors, food writers and retailers from the U.S., Canada and Europe -- celebrates the widespread enthusiasm for American specialty cheese. More than 700 attended this year's conference, participating in educational seminars on subjects from cheesemaking to the art of maturing cheese. Every year, the conference culminates in the gala Festival of Cheese, a public event featuring more than 1,100 competition entries on display and available for tasting.

The American Cheese Society is the country's premier platform for cheese industry research and education. Founded in 1983, the ACS has grown to include approximately 1,250 members. Among its many endeavors, the Society works with the federal government on issues related to standards for the production of cheese and fermented dairy products.

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Contact Information

  • Contact:
    Maria Chapman
    American Cheese Society
    Email Contact
    (502) 574-9939