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Calling all Cheese Heads

m
millygirl Apr 17, 2008 09:46 AM

The Ontario Cheese Society is holding an Artisanal Cheese Tasting and Marketplace at Hart House on April 28th. We just bought tickets and it sounds to be a very interesting event. Tickets are $30 p.p. Apparently 30-40 Ontario cheese producers will be on hand. Thought I should pass the info along. Tickets are limited so if interested you'd best act fast. After all, who doesn't like cheese!!!

  1. c
    currycue Apr 21, 2008 09:57 AM

    Do report back on how it goes. I'm really excited that there are so many cheese makers in this province. It seems a shame to have to import cheeses from so far when we have the ingredients right here in our own backyard.

    That said, of the Ontario cheeses I've tasted so far, I haven't been too impressed. They look the part and sometimes smell the part, but the flavour just doesn't seem to be there. Maybe they don't age their cheeses long enough or under the right conditions, but I'm still waiting for a great Ontario cheese.

    8 Replies
    1. re: currycue
      g
      Gurth Jun 5, 2008 06:57 PM

      For the first time OCS Marketplace, it was very well-attended by both the member cheesemakers, enthusiast members and members of the public. The attendance levels happily surprised the organizers. There were many new cheeses I had not yet sampled. The Society learned from this first experience to find a larger location and inform cheesemakers to bring more cheese for such future events. Growing pains I guess.

      To sample and purchase a wide selection of these cheese, visit the Cheese of Canada booth at Nathan Phillips Square Farmers' Market (Wednesdays, 9 am to 2 pm), Oakville Place Farmers' Market (Thursdays, 8 am to 2 pm) and Square One Farmers' Market (Sundays, 8 am to 5 pm). Visit www.CheeseofCanada.ca for more details.

      1. re: Gurth
        m
        millygirl Jun 6, 2008 04:09 AM

        Sorry it's taken me awhile to report back in.

        I'm sure the attendance levels made the organizers happy. Too bad for the attendee's though. To say it was crowded is an understatement. Our party of 4 stayed for a total of about 15 minutes and headed out. Lining up for a smidgeon of cheese is not my thing. You could not move in the place.

        Getting to the cheeses, the only one in my mind worth seeking out was Monteforte's. And I already knew about that one. I also picked up some of the Niagara Gold at the show and it was just meh for me. Heck it was $30 a ticket. I thought that Monteforte could have showcased more than just one of her cheeses. All in all, it was a waste of money and time.

        I will give them this though - they realized that mistakes were made and sent an email out afterwards, even asking for feedback. Perhaps next year it will be an event to seek out.

        1. re: millygirl
          c
          currycue Jun 6, 2008 08:25 AM

          Thanks for that. That's a downer. At least we're on our way, I suppose. There was an interesting article in this month's Toronto Life that explored locally made products including cheeses. I wonder what we need to do to create a really good, strong local cheese?

          1. re: currycue
            foodyDudey Jun 6, 2008 09:50 AM

            There are good, strong local cheeses. The Thunder Oak 4 year old gouda is one of them.

            1. re: foodyDudey
              DockPotato Jun 6, 2008 12:43 PM

              7 year old Pine River Cheddar is a standout. It's one of the last, if not the last, Ontario Cheddars made from whole milk, not components. Extra Old and 5 year old are not shabby either.

              1. re: DockPotato
                foodyDudey Jun 6, 2008 01:12 PM

                Where can I buy those? I called Thubder Oak and found out that the oldest gouda they sell is 1 year old, the Cheese Boutique ages it a further 3 years. It's $5.99/100 gr from them. If you want to try it out, it's on the menu at Globe Bistro.

                1. re: foodyDudey
                  DockPotato Jun 6, 2008 02:09 PM

                  foodyDudey, is that query to me or a prior post?

        2. re: Gurth
          foodyDudey Jun 6, 2008 05:27 AM

          Gurth,

          do you have any Thunder Oak Gouda available at the Nathan Philips Square location? I'm looking for the four year old version.

      2. t
        tracey Apr 17, 2008 10:44 AM

        I can't wait for this event - I've already had my ticket for weeks! Just one small clarification - I understand that there will be 6-9 producers, representing 30-40 different cheeses. The Ontario Cheese Society was serving local cheeses at the Brewers Plate on the weekend, and I'm hoping that some of those will be available at this event, particularly Jensen's 3-year old raw milk cheddar.

        3 Replies
        1. re: tracey
          m
          millygirl Apr 17, 2008 11:49 AM

          Cricky, you're right Tracey!!! Thanks for the clarification. I should really pay more attention to these things.

          1. re: millygirl
            a
            acd123 Apr 17, 2008 11:55 AM

            Yeah, I went to their website and I don't think there are even 30-40 different producers in the whole province of ON! Cheesemaking in ON is light years behind La Belle Provence.

            1. re: acd123
              m
              millygirl Apr 17, 2008 12:06 PM

              True enough.

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