14th March, 2019
The awards are celebrating their 26th year and will take place on Wednesday 29th May 2019 at the Royal Bath & West Show, Shepton Mallet, Somerset. The judging and the presentation of the prizes at the awards dinner will all take place on the same day.
As well as the Supreme Champion, the four Country Awards and the nine Main Category Awards, this year also sees two new awards for Cheddar cheese, an award for the Best Block Cheddar and another for Best Traditional Cheddar.
Last year’s competition attracted 1,008 entries from 148 cheesemakers that covered the length and breadth of the UK and Ireland. Cheeses entered came from over 54 counties that covered the length and breadth of the UK and Ireland, showing just how vibrant the British Cheese Industry is today. For 2019, 70 judges will judge 124 classes of cheese in 13 categories.
Judges will score the cheeses on presentation, texture, aroma, flavour and balance. Dependent on the scores that each cheese receives, gold, silver and bronze medals will be awarded.
Julius Longman, chairman of the British Cheese Awards, says: “We are delighted to announce that the British Cheese Awards 2019 are now open for entries. Since the awards were first started we’ve seen a large increase in the number of cheesemakers entering. It just shows that not only is it a vibrant industry but that it is one that produces superb cheese. The awards are a great celebration of cheesemakers’ passion and variety. We are looking forward to seeing what these cheesemakers, renowned for their excellence and commitment to quality, will put into competition for this year.”
Roger Longman, cheesemaker from Somerset-based White Lake Cheese , winner of last year’s Supreme Champion Award for its Sheep Rustler, says: “We were thrilled to win Supreme Champion last year for Sheep Rustler. The British Cheese Awards are the premier cheese awards in the UK and to us are the ones that matter. It was a superb experience for us and it means so much for us to be judged by our peers. The event and the judges are the best in the country and they really are a superb celebration of British cheesemakers .”
This year sees the awards being hosted in a new location, Exmoor Hall at the Royal Bath & West Showground. Located opposite the Main Ring this location gives the awards more visibility at the show as there is higher visitor footfall. This new home will also host cheesemakers selling their delicious cheeses to cheese enthusiasts, creating a location dedicated to not only seeing award-winning cheeses but giving visitors the opportunity to buy them. So from traditional farmhouse Cheddar to more adventurous cheese, such as highly fragrant washed rind cheeses, there will be a great selection of products to buy.