Le Baluchon named Canadian Cheese of the Year

Marie-Claude Harvey, Fromagerie FX Pichet, flanked by Georgs Kolesnikovs, chairman, Canadian Cheese Awards, Gurth Pretty, Loblaw Companies, Marquee Sponsor, and Dr. Arthur Hill, Chief Judge, Canadian Cheese Awards.

Marie-Claude Harvey, Fromagerie FX Pichet, flanked by Georgs Kolesnikovs, chairman, Canadian Cheese Awards, Gurth Pretty, Loblaw Companies, Marquee Sponsor, and Dr. Arthur Hill, University of Guelph, who served as Chief Judge, Canadian Cheese Awards.

Winners in the inaugural Canadian Cheese Awards/Le Concours des fromages fins canadiens were announced during an Awards Ceremony, Reception and Tasting Gala on April 7 at St. Lawrence Market North in Toronto.

The new and independent competition, with Loblaw Companies as Marquee Sponsor, has immediately become the biggest cheese competition in Canada with 76 producers from Newfoundland to British Columbia submitting 291 cheeses for judging.

Le Baluchon, an exquisite semi-soft cheese made with organic raw milk, was named Canadian Cheese of the Year, Best Semi-Soft Cheese and Best Organic Cheese. Marie-Claude Harvey, co-owner of Fromagerie FX Pichet in Sainte-Anne-de-la-Pérade, Québec, and her cheese will be in the spotlight at The Great Canadian Cheese Festival on June 7-8.

Le Baluchon: Canadian Cheese of the Year.

Le Baluchon: Canadian Cheese of the Year.

CHEESE OF THE YEAR/FROMAGE D’EXCEPTION

Le Baluchon
Fromagerie FX Pichet
Sainte-Anne-de-la-Pérade, Québec

BEST FRESH CHEESE

Bella Casara Mascarpone
Quality Cheese
Vaughan, Ontario

BEST SEMI-SOFT CHEESE

Le Baluchon
Fromagerie FX Pichet
Sainte-Anne-de-la-Pérade, Québec

BEST FETA/CHEESE IN BRINE

Goat Milk Feta
Crystal Springs Cheese
Lethbridge County, Alberta

BEST FIRM CHEESE

Eweda Cru
Best Baa Dairy
Fergus, Ontario

BEST FIRM CHEESE WITH HOLES

Louis d’Or
Fromagerie du Presbytère
Sainte-Élisabeth-de-Warwick, Québec

BEST WASHED RIND CHEESE

La Meule des Champs
Fromagerie Éco-Délices
Plessisville, Québec

BEST MIXED RIND CHEESE

Rang des îles
Fromagerie Médard
Saint-Gédéon, Québec

BEST SOFT CHEESE/BLOOMY RIND CHEESE

Magie de Madawaska
Fromagerie Le Détour
Temiscouata Sur Le Lac, Québec

BEST FLAVOURED CHEESE

Raclette de Compton au Poivre
Fromagerie La Station
Compton, Québec

BEST SMOKED CHEESE

Natural Smoked Gouda
Sylvan Star Cheese
Red Deer, Alberta

BEST MILD/MEDIUM CHEDDAR
(aged up to 9 months)

Cheddar Île-aux-grues
Fromagerie Isle-aux-Grues
L’Isle-aux-Grues, Québec

BEST OLD CHEDDAR
(aged from 9 months to 1 year)

COWS CREAMERY Extra Old Cheddar
COWS CREAMERY
Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island

BEST AGED CHEDDAR
(aged 1 to 3 years)

Farm House Traditional Clothbound Cheddar
The Farm House Natural Cheeses
Agassiz, British Columbia

BEST AGED CHEDDAR
(aged 4 years and more)

Agropur Grand Cheddar 5 ans
Agropur
Saint-Hubert, Québec

BEST GOUDA CHEESE

Golden Blyth
Blyth Farm Cheese
Blyth, Ontario

BEST BLUE CHEESE

Dragon’s Breath Blue
That Dutchman’s Farm
Upper Economy, Nova Scotia

BEST COW’S MILK CHEESE

Bella Casara Mascarpone
Quality Cheese
Vaughan, Ontario

BEST GOAT’S MILK CHEESE

Lenberg Farms Classic Reserve by Celebrity Lindsay Bandaged Cheddar
Mariposa Dairy
Lindsay, Ontario

BEST SHEEP’S MILK CHEESE

Lenberg Farms Reserve by Celebrity Tania Sheep Cheese
Mariposa Dairy
Lindsay, Ontario

BEST WATER BUFFALO CHEESE

Buffalo Paneer
Natural Pastures Cheese
Courtenay, British Columbia

BEST BLENDED-MILK CHEESE

Le Verdict d’Alexina
Fromagerie Le Détour
Temiscouata Sur Le Lac, Québec

BEST FARMSTEAD CHEESE

Plain Soft Goat Cheese
Noble Meadows Farm
Nobleford, Alberta

BEST ORGANIC CHEEESE

Le Baluchon
Fromagerie FX Pichet
Sainte-Anne-de-la-Pérade, Québec

BEST RAW-MILK CHEESE

Louis d’Or
Fromagerie du Presbytère
Sainte-Élisabeth-de-Warwick, Québec

BEST NEW CHEESE

Fontina Fumé
Fromagerie de l’Abbaye Saint-Benoît-du-Lac
Saint-Benoît-du-Lac, Québec

BEST BRITISH COLUMBIA CHEESE

Farm House Traditional Clothbound Cheddar
The Farm House Natural Cheeses
Agassiz, British Columbia

BEST ALBERTA CHEESE

Natural Smoked Gouda
Sylvan Star Cheese
Red Deer, Alberta

BEST ONTARIO CHEESE

Bella Casara Mascarpone
Quality Cheese
Vaughan, Ontario

BEST QUEBEC CHEESE

Louis d’Or
Fromagerie du Presbytère
Sainte-Élisabeth-de-Warwick, Québec

BEST ATLANTIC CANADA CHEESE

COWS CREAMERY Extra Old Cheddar
COWS CREAMERY
Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island

The new and independent competition, with Loblaw Companies as Marquee Sponsor, has immediately become the biggest cheese competition in Canada with 76 producers from Newfoundland to British Columbia submitting 291 cheeses for judging. Appropriately, the competition reached its climax at the venue National Geographic has called the world’s best food market.

Chief Judge Art Hill and the 10 expert judges who evaluated and scored 291 cheese submitted in the inaugural competition.

Chief Judge Art Hill and 10 expert judges evaluated and scored 291 cheese submitted in the inaugural judging and competition.

Judging took place at University of Guelph, Department of Food Science headed by Dr. Arthur Hill, Chair and Professor in Food Science and an internationally recognized authority in cheese technology.

It is the first cheese competition in Canada open to all milks used in cheesemaking—cow, goat, sheep and water buffalo—with only pure natural cheese accepted for judging. That means with no artificial colours, flavours or preservatives, and no modified milk ingredients.

The Canadian Cheese Awards is sponsored by Loblaw Companies and Dairy Farmers of Canada, La Ferme Black River Game Farm, Plaisirs Gourmets, Palatine Hills Estate Winery, The Grange of Prince Edward Vineyards & Estate Winery, Mill St. Brewery, ACE Bakery, Seed to Sausage and The Great Canadian Cheese Festival, with historic St. Lawrence Market the venue sponsor.

The Official Cheesemongers of the Awards are the cheese shops of St. Lawrence Market: Chris’ Cheesemongers, Olympic Cheese Mart and Scheffler’s Delicatessen & Cheese.

As a service to the cheese industry and as a guide for consumers, Canadian Cheese Awards is produced by The Great Canadian Cheese Festival, the biggest artisan cheese show in Canada that is held annually in June in Ontario’s Prince Edward County, in Bay of Quinte Region near Belleville. Georgs Kolesnikovs, founder and director of the Cheese Festival, serves as Awards Chairman.

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