Wisconsin cheesemakers have won all three top awards at the U.S. Championship Cheese Contest in Green Bay.
A black pepper Italian style cheese from Sartori of Antigo was judged the nation’s best, as master cheesemaker Mike Matucheski had the top score of 99.02. The first runner up was a cheddar from Agropur of Weyauwega, and the second runner up was a gouda made by Marieke Gouda in Thorp.
Fifty judges from 18 states sampled a record 2,300 cheese, butter, and yogurt entries in the national contest held this week in the Lambeau Field Atrium in Green Bay.
Wisconsin cheeses won 58 gold medals in the 101 categories, and the Badger State had 14 of the 20 finalists before the top honors were announced Thursday night.
All of that cheese won’t go to waste, as an estimated 4.5 tons will be donated to a local pantry in Green Bay.