Tickets for the 7th annual Artisan Cheese Festival, March 22 -24 at the Sheraton Sonoma County in Petaluma, have just gone on sale, and some of the most popular events are already selling out -- that’s how popular this event is.
And with good reason. Three days of dinners, receptions, tours, classes and seminars have something for everyone. Links in the story will take you to the website for more information, or to purchase tickets.
Here’s the line-up:
FRIDAY FARM TOURS
Three of the five farm tours have already sold out. so if you’re interested, get out your credit card and go to the website immediately for details.
- Farm Tour D – Cowgirl Creamery, Point Reyes Farmstead Cheese and a three-course luncheon with Lizzie Binder, late of Jardiniere, Bar Bambino, and most recently Top Chef: Seattle. Tickets, $135 per person.
- Farm Tour E – La Franchi Ranch and Nicasio Valley Cheese Company tour; wine tasting at Keller Estate Winery and a three-course luncheon prepared bt chef Mayet Cristobal of Bon Appetit at the Getty, and the Getty Villa in Malibu. Tickets $135 per person
SATURDAY: CLASSES, DEMONSTRATIONS, SEMINARS and GRAND TASTING DINNER EVENT
Pick a class from the morning (9:30 – 11:30) or afternoon (1:30 – 3:30) sessions – or both. Lunch, catered by Petaluma Market is included. Cheesemaking classes are $95, all others are $65.
9:30 – 11:30 CLASSES
- New Kids on the Cheese Block Moderator: Janet Fletcher, Food Writer & Educator - Artisan cheesemakers and their newest creations; tastings paired with beer and wine.
- Mac & Cheese Please! Plus Wine = Perfection! Presenter: Laura Werlin, Author & Educator Werlin presents four delectable recipes from her recently published book, Mac & Cheese, Please! and samples the cheeses that make them special. Wines paired with each recipe.
- Cooking with Cheese Presenters: Janne Rasmussen from Cypress Grove, Jennifer Luttrell from Pt. Reyes Farmstead, Lenny Rice-Moonsammy from Bellwether and Jacquelyn Buchanan from Laura Chenel Chevre - Cheesemaking, food-loving former chefs and chef wannabes (with over 100 years of combined experience) take you on a round robin style cooking class, whipping-up an appetizer, salad, side dish, entree and dessert featuring cheese as a main ingredient.
- Simple, Fresh Same Day Cheeses Presenter: Mary Karlin, Author, Chef & Educator - Techniques and methods from Karlin’s Artisan Cheese Making at Home. Hands-on cheese making of three fresh “same-day” cheeses from scratch: Whole Milk Ricotta, Indian Paneer and Italian Mascarpone.
- Cheesemaking for the Extreme Hobbyist Presenter: Gianaclis Caldwell, Author and Owner of Pholia Farm - Tricks and tips for perfecting the art – and mastering the science – of cheesemaking. You’ll learn crucial curd-nerd technique and terminology – from flocculation to heterofermentation and proteolysis to lipolysis
- Mixin’ It Up With Chef John Ash Moderator: John Ash, chef, author and educator Panelists: Five Artisan Cheesemakers - Tasting artisan mixed milk cheeses with a panel of cheesemaking experts. Hear from these experts what inspired them to delve and experiment in the world of mixed milk cheese. Chef Ash also shares wine matching suggestions for these more complex cheeses.
11:30 – 1:30 Book Signings by Select Authors
12:00 – 1:00 Lunch Catered by Petaluma Market
1:30 – 3:30 Afternoon Sessions
- Cheese Meets Beer: Strategies for Harmony Presenters: Janet Fletcher, Food Writer & Educator and Rich Higgins, Master Cicerone - Students will sample a half dozen of America’s most admired craft brews, paired with cheeses that partner with them best.
- Fresh Cultured Cheeses Presenter: Mary Karlin, Author, Chef & Educator Making fresh cultured cheeses, including: Fromage Blanc (cow’s milk) and Chevre (goat’s milk). Building on the concepts of cheese making from the morning session (recommended but not required for this workshop. Participants will get hands-on to help separate curds from whey as chef Mary shares tips and advice for perfect results.
- On-line to On-plate: Bloggers Cook with Cheese Presenters: Garrett McCord (VanillaGarlic), Stephanie Stiavetti (TheCulinaryLife), Kristin Jackson (itsnotyouitsbrie) - Plumb the intricacies of combining your favorite cheese with herbs, fruits, vegetables and meats. How does a cheese’s texture change as it bakes or is swirled into a sauce and, most importantly, how do you plan for these changes when developing a recipe?
- The Secrets of Making Stretched Curd Cheese Presenters: Gianaclis Caldwell, Author and Owner of Pholia Farm and Bob Peak, The Beverage People Whether it is Provolone or Mozzarella, pasta-filata cheeses (stretched curd) all share similar requirements. that the savvy cheesemaker will know how to meet. Learn the science of stretched curd and get hands-on experience stretching and forming traditional pasta filata cheeses.
- Old World, New World Cheeses Presenter: Laura Werlin, Author & Educator Werlin showcases four stellar New World cheese offerings from California side by side with their Old World counterparts. A whole new take on their imported favorites versus California’s artisan cheese.
- How to Talk Cheese Presenters: Lassa Skinner, Culture Magazine Co-Founder, Cheese For Dummies Co-Author & Oxbow Cheese Merchant Co-Founder and Ricardo Huijon, Oxbow Cheese Merchant Co-Founder - This information packed class will provide you with “everything you always wanted to know about artisan cheese, but were afraid to ask”. Sisters Lassa and Stephanie Skinner will both entertain and enlighten you as you use your five senses to discover what cheese is, how it tastes, how and where it’s made and how it’s classified.
- Cheese Platters that Wow Pr esenters: Leah McFadden, Certified Cheese Professional by ACS & Team Leader and Nancy Brunner, Cheese Specialist from Whole Foods Learn how to create a winning cheese platter, no matter what your budget. Cheesemongers demonstrate more than three different platter options. Also covered: serving pieces, “go-with” condiments, as well as the very personal topic of when cheese should be featured – as an appetizer, after the main course, or with salad – and appropriate wine pairings.
3:30 – 5:30 - Book Signings by Select Authors
- More than 20 top restaurants, caterers, wineries and breweries vie for your affection in this roaming feast in this lighthearted competition of all things cheese. From soufflés to sandwiches, guests can expect to experience artisan cheese in entirely new ways. Tickets are $75 per person.
9:30 – NOON - Stark Reality Brunch – Let the Cheese Shine
- Chef Mark Stark of Stark Reality Restaurants takes you on a cooking adventure showcasing some of his favorite artisan cheeses and how to best include them in a recipe for success. Brunch guests gain VIP access to the Artisan Cheese Tasting & Marketplace from 11:00 am – noon, an hour before it opens to the public. Tickets, $115 per person.
NOON – 4:00 - Artisan Cheese Tasting and Marketplace
- Over 70 artisan producers of local cheese, wine, beer and other specialty foods, cheese accompaniments, cheesemaking products and books. Pick up new recipes, tips and tricks at chef demos scheduled throughout the day. Ticket includes admission, access to chef demos and author book signings, Artisan Cheese Festival insulated cheese tote bag, and a festival wine glass. Tickets, $45 per person; 12 years and under, $20.