The second year of the Virtual Cheese Awards in association with Food and Drink Wales was a celebration of the best British cheese and The Cheddar Gorge Cheese Company were overjoyed to have been awarded SILVER medal for its 30 month matured VINTAGE cheddar cheese.
The Cheddar Gorge Cheese Company are the only producers of Cheddar cheese in the village of Cheddar Somerset, their mission to preserve authentic cheddar cheese has paid off! Still made by hand with raw milk and matured in cloth, this husband and wife team, John and Katherine Spencer are very proud of their second place prize.
The Virtual Cheese Awards was created in 2020 by Sarah de Wit to celebrate and support Britain’s world-leading cheese industry in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic which threatened to decimate the industry.
The five-hour final of the pioneering cheese awards took place on Friday 7th May 2021 hosted by BBC broadcaster and local food and drink champion, Nigel Barden and was beamed online to 1000s of cheese fans who watched the cheese action unfold.
Sarah de Wit, co-founder of the Virtual Cheese Awards and Cheese & Dairy consultant said: “We’re so grateful to everyone who took part in and supported the awards this year, it was a real celebration of all that is brilliant about British cheese. The British cheese industry has had a hard year but this event shows that it has come back fighting.
It’s vitally important that we continue to support our Great British cheese industry by seeking out and buying new and exciting cheeses, which is now so simple with the growth of online cheese shops.”
As Katherine said “We’re thrilled to have won a silver medal in the Virtual Cheese Awards, it was amazing to watch the judging live online. We thoroughly enjoyed listening to the judge’s comments too – something which we don’t normally have the privilege of hearing!”
The final featured seven final cheese categories were all judged live online by a panel of expert cheese judges. The categories included British Cheddar, British Speciality, Best Artisan Hard and Best Enhanced cheese categories.
The panel of expert judges included Dhruv Baker, co-founder of Tempus Foods and Masterchef winner, Tracey Colley founding director of Academy of Cheese, Sam Wilkin, head cheesemonger at the Cheese Bar Group, Perry Wakeman, head of cheese at Rennet & Rind, Emma Young The Cheese Explorer, Holly Shackleton, editor of Speciality Food magazine and cheese buyers from Selfridges, Adrian Boswell and Chris Dawson from M&S.
In an edge-of-your-seat final the Best of the Best British cheese was awarded to La Fresca Margarita which impressed judges with its melt-in-the-mouth flavour and citrus notes.