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Serving: WI

State Fair Cheese & Butter Contest Winners Selected

'Grand Master Cheesemaker' will be announced July 31.

By Katy Katzman

The results are in! The winning entries have been selected for the 2008 Wisconsin State Fair Cheese & Butter Contest. Dairy manufacturers from throughout the state submitted more than 260 entries for competition, which took place June 27 at Wisconsin State Fair Park. The 22 classes were evaluated in such categories as flavor, appearance and texture.

Following the contest, the judges selected a "Grand Master Cheese" from the first-place cheese entries. The "Grand Master Cheesemaker" will be announced during the Blue Ribbon Cheese & Butter Auction, which will take place Thursday, July 31 in Saz's Hospitality Village at Wisconsin State Fair Park.

The Blue Ribbon Cheese & Butter Auction, which features the sale of the blue-ribbon entries, is a fundraising event for the nonprofit, all-volunteer Wisconsin State Fair Dairy Promotion Board. The board awards five, $1,000 student scholarships and vigorously promotes the dairy industry throughout the 11-day Wisconsin State Fair July 31-Aug. 10. Auction proceeds support the House of Moo dairy education center, the opening day dairy promotion, which this year will feature "Wisconsin's Grand Champion Pizza," and the Wisconsin State Fair milking demonstrations.

The top entries in each class include:

Cheddar
Coreen Bitter, Land O'Lakes, Kiel, Colored Cheddar, 98.7
Divya Reddy, Trega Foods for Kraft, Glenview, IL, Kraft Aged Cheddar, 98.25
Richard Lechner, Lynn Dairy, Granton, Mild Cheddar, 97.7
Colby, Monterey Jack
Jerry Fredrick, Lynn Dairy, Granton, Monterey Jack, 99.45
Richard Lechner, Lynn Dairy, Granton, Monterey Jack, 99.3
Roger Larson, Maple Leaf Cheesemakers, Monroe, Monterey Jack Wheel, 99.15
Swiss Styles
Silvan Blum, Chalet Cheese Co-op, Monroe, Baby Swiss Wheel, 99.6
Neal Schwartz, Chalet Cheese Co-op, Monroe, Baby Swiss Wheel, 99.55
Jamie Fahrney, Chalet Cheese Co-op, Monroe, Baby Swiss, 99.2
Brick, Muenster
Dave Buholzer, Klondike Cheese Co., Monroe, Brick, 99.65
Matt Erdley, Klondike Cheese Co., Monroe, Muenster, 99.6
Ron Bechtolt, Klondike Cheese Co., Monroe, Brick, 99.55
Mozzarella
Jim Schuster, Trega Foods, Luxemburg, Low-Moisture Part-Skim Mozzarella, 99.4
Pat Doell, Trega Foods, Luxemburg, Low-Moisture Mozzarella Whole Milk, 99.3
Roger Krohn, Trega Foods, Luxemburg, Low-Moisture Part-Skim Mozzarella, 99.25
String Cheese
George Crave, Crave Brothers Farmstead Cheese, Waterloo, Crave Brothers Farmers Rope, 97.75
Chris Renard, Renards Rosewood Dairy, Algoma, String Cheese, 97.7
Brian Renard, Renards Rosewood Dairy, Algoma, String Cheese, 97.65
Blue Veined Cheese
Bryon Schroeder, Sartori Foods, Plymouth, Blue Cheese, 99.05
William Schrock, DCI Cheese Co., Richfield, Salemville Blue Cheese, 98.65
Mark Abel, North Hendren Co-op Dairy, Willard, Black River Gorgonzola, 98.55
Feta
Jim Demeter, Trega Foods, Weyauwega, Feta in Brine, 99.3
Steve Buholzer, Klondike Cheese Co., Monroe, Feta, 99.25
Nathan Forseth, Trega Foods, Weyauwega, Feta in Brine, 99.2
Pepper Flavored Cheese
Roger Larson, Maple Leaf Cheesemakers, Monroe, Jalapeno Pepper Monterey Jack, 98.95
Tom Ramsden, Meister Cheese Co., Muscoda, Three Alarm Colby Jack Longhorn, 98.6
Steve Stettler, Decatur Dairy, Brodhead, Pepper Havarti, 97.45
Flavored Soft Cheese
Dan Osterholz, Lactalis USA, Belmont, Herb Brie, 98.4
Jim Demeter, Trega Foods, Weyauwega, Feta With Basil & Tomato in Brine, 97.65
Adam Buholzer, Klondike Cheese Co., Monroe, Peppercorn Feta, 97.15
Flavored Semi Soft Cheese
Ron Buholzer, Klondike Cheese Co., Monroe, Dill Havarti, 99.6
Hans Lehner, Valley View Cheese, South Wayne, Dill Havarti, 99.2
Steve Stettler, Decatur Dairy, Brodhead, Havarti Dill, 99.15
Flavored Hard Cheese
Mike Matucheski, Sartori Foods, Plymouth, Rosemary Olive Oil Rubbed Asiago Wheel, 98.75
Mike Matucheski, Sartori Foods, Plymouth, Basil Olive Oil Rubbed Asiago Wheel, 98.65
Sid Cook, Carr Valley Cheese, LaValle, Apple Smoked Cheddar, 97.95
Smear Ripened Cheese
Mike Tourdot, Chalet Cheese Co-op, Monroe, German Style Brick, 99.45
Doug Kundert, Chalet Cheese Co-op, Monroe, German Style Brick, 99.05
Joseph Widmer, Widmers Cheese Cellars, Theresa, Washed Rind Brick, 98.55
Cold Pack Cheese, Cheese Food
Jeff Stecker, Pine River, Newton, Swiss Almond, 99.35
Phil Lindemann, Pine River, Newton, Black Diamond Extra Sharp Cheddar, 99.3
Bob Eger, Bel Brands USA, Little Chute, Horseradish Spreadable, 99.15
Pasteurized Process Cheese, Cheese Food, Cheese Spread
Jeff Strandholm, American Dairy Brands, Plymouth, Pasteurized Processed American, 97.65
Alan Reuter, Lactalis USA, Belmont, Wee Brie, 96.45
Reduced Fat or Lite Cheese
Terry Lensmire, Trega Foods, Weyauwega, Reduced Fat Feta in Brine, 99.2
Chad Abrahamson, Saputo Cheese USA, Fond du Lac, Reduced Fat Blue Cheese Wheel, 99.0
Lewis Burmeister, Roth Kase USA, Monroe, St. Otho's, 98.85
Open Class - Soft and Spreadable Cheese
George Crave, Crave Brothers Farmstead Cheese, Waterloo, Mascarpone, 99.3
Lenny Bass, Lactalis USA, Belmont, Brie, 98.85
Open Class - Semi-Soft Cheese
Ron Bechtolt, Klondike Cheese Co., Monroe, Havarti, 99.6
Gary Grossen, Babcock Dairy Plant, Madison, Gouda, 99.55
Steve Stettler, Decatur Dairy, Brodhead, Havarti, 99.2
Open Class – Hard Cheese
Gary Domke, Sartori Foods, Plymouth, SarVecchio Parmesan Wheel, 98.8
John Griffiths, Sartori Foods, Plymouth, SarVecchio Parmesan Wheel, 97.85
Jon Gougar, Sartori Foods, Plymouth, Bellavitano Block, 97.8
Goat Milk Cheese
Tom Torkelson, Pasture Pride, Cashton, Redstone Robust, 99.4
Sid Cook, Carr Valley Cheese, LaValle, Aged Cardona, 99.2
Jean Rossard, Montchevre Betin, Belmont, Darsonval, 99.05
Sheep & Mixed Milk Cheese
Brenda Jensen, Hidden Springs Creamery, Westby, Fresh Pasteurized Sheep Milk Cheese (Natural), 99.0
Tom Torkelson, Pasture Pride, Cashton, Cowbilly, 98.2
Brenda Jensen, Hidden Springs Creamery, Westby, Fresh Pasteurized Sheep Milk Cheese (Basil), 97.75
Butter
Team Graf, Graf Creamery, Zachow, Salted Butter, 99.35
Team Graf, Graf Creamery, Zachow, Unsalted Butter, 98.2
Katzman is board coordinator for the Wisconsin State Fair Dairy Promotion Board.

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