Wisconsin Goat's Milk Cheese Wins United States Championship Cheese Title

Mar 10, 2011, 13:47 ET from Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association

MADISON, Wis., March 10, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- A national panel of expert judges today named a Wisconsin goat's milk cheese as the 2011 U.S. Championship Cheese.

Katie Hedrich, of LaClare Farms in Chilton, Wis., took top honors out of 1,604 entries from 30 states for her Evalon, a hard goat's milk cheese. Out of a possible 100 points, Evalon scored 99.06 in the final round of judging, during which judges re-evaluated all gold-winning cheeses to determine the champion.

First runner-up in the contest, with a score of 98.97, is Parmesan, made by Sartori in Plymouth. Second runner-up is Aged Gouda, made by Holland's Family Cheese, of Thorp, which scored 98.95.

"Hundreds of cheesemakers and buttermakers from around the country have participated in the largest national cheese competition ever held. Every medalist should be extremely proud of their accomplishment," said John Umhoefer, executive director of the Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association, which hosts the biennial competition.

Capturing the most gold medals was Wisconsin, with 42 of the total 76 categories judged. California came in second among the states, with nine golds. Vermont had five gold medals, Idaho had four golds, while New Jersey, New York and Ohio all took three. Oregon and Pennsylvania won two gold medals, and Kentucky, Michigan and Utah each captured one apiece.

The United States Championship Cheese Contest is the largest cheese and butter competition in the country and is rooted in more than 120 years of history, beginning when the Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association held its first cheese contest in 1891. In recent years, the event has flourished, more than doubling in size since 2001. This year, more than 30,000 pounds of cheese were entered into the contest.

For more information on the contest, as well as complete results for all 76 entry classes and contest photos, visit www.uschampioncheese.org

SOURCE Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association