Southern Artisan Cheese Festival, September 28 in Nashville, Tennessee

by dccheese on August 30, 2013

in American Cheese Society,American-South,cheese awards,cheese festivals,Cheesemakers & People,Cheesemongers & Shops,events

Southern Artisan Cheese Festival

Summer may be winding down, but we’ve got one more road trip recommendation for you: the 3rd Annual Southern Artisan Cheese Festival in Nashville, Tenn., on Saturday, September 28, 2013. Southern cheese is hot right now — from that gorgeous feature in Garden & Gun magazine to the cheese counters of NYC — which is no small feat for a region that had virtually no artisan cheese production a decade ago. Now, you can find an artisan producer in every single state in the region. Kathleen Cotter of The Bloomy Rind in Nashville started the Southern Artisan Cheese Festival three years ago to gather these producers together and make lucky Tennesseans aware of how many good cheeses they can find in their own backyard.

Padgett Arnold | Sequatchie Cove | CheeseandChampagne

Don’t just take my word for it though. Here are the awards racked up by Southern cheesemakers at the American Cheese Society 2013 competition in Madison:

  • Bonnie Blue Farm, TN, Tanasi Tomme, 3rd place
  • Caromont Farm, VA, Esmontonian, 2nd place
  • Everona Dairy, VA, Pride of Bacchus, 2nd place
  • Everona Dairy, VA, Williamsburg, 3rd place
  • FireFly Farms, MD, Black & Blue, 2nd place
  • Goat Lady Dairy, NC, Plain Spreadable Goat Cheese, 3rd place
  • Many Fold Farm, GA, Brebis, 2nd place
  • Meadow Creek Dairy, VA, Appalachian, 2nd place
  • Meadow Creek Dairy, VA, Grayson, 3rd place
  • P A Bowen Farmstead, MD, Chesapeake Cheddar, 2nd place
  • Sequatchie Cove Creamery, TN, Dancing Fern, 3rd place
  • Sweet Grass Dairy, GA, Green Hill, 3rd place
  • Three Graces Dairy, NC, Goat Feta, 3rd place

{Pictured above, Padgett Arnold of Sequatchie Cove with a stack of their lovely cheeses, including Dancing Fern.}

    Estmontonian | Carmont Farm |

    This year, the festival moves to an indoor location downtown and offers additional opportunities to engage with the roughly 20 cheesemakers in attendance. A “Meet Your Maker” dinner the evening before will feature cheese-centric dishes in a family-style sit-down meal. VIP ticket holders can attend sessions on cheese sensory evaluation or making and cooking with cheese the morning of the festival. Or, just spend $45 to spend the afternoon sampling more than 150 cheese, accompaniments, craft beer and wine.

    We asked Cotter what she was most looking forward to about this year’s event:

    “The Southern Artisan Cheese Festival is about the cheese, so I’m always excited to see what each of the producers brings and to meet new cheesemakers, some of whom have such small production, we seldom have their cheeses in Nashville. We’re in a new venue this year that was a historic meat packing plant that operated from the early 1900s throughout the 70s. The building has that great rustic feel with lots of natural light, just perfect for our event.”

    Only 600 tickets will be sold this year, so hop on over to the Festival website to learn more and purchase your tickets today!

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