A La Carte
8:06 PM EDT, October 6, 2013
This weekend’s Coventry Regional Farmers' Market is dedicated to the caseophiles. The Connecticut Cheese Festival on Oct. 13 runs concurrently with the market at the Nathan Hale Homestead, presenting a full schedule of classes, demonstrations, and pairing seminars to celebrate the state’s dairy bounty.
Among the special events planned for the day: “Making a Cheese Plate for 2 or 200,” a demonstration led by Brian Civitello, founder of Mystic Cheese Company; “Cooking with ‘The Big Cheese’” Jason Sobocinski of Caseus Fromagerie & Bistro and The Cooking Channel; a mozzarella-making demo with New England Cheesemaking Supply Company, Inc. and a “Market Bites” tour with Connecticut cheesemongers, who will lead tours throughout the market to select breads, oils, chutneys, jams and fruits and vegetables to pair with their cheese selections.
Sobocinski also leads a class with Onyx Moonshine of East Hartford, highlighting the pairing potential of cheese with cocktails and spirits. Laura Downey of the Fairfield Cheese Company presides over a cheese and microbrew pairing seminar, showing attendees how to enhance their cheese experience with the right beers. And cheese meets art with a “Poetry, Music and Cheese” class with Robert Aguilera of Fromagex. Each class is $30; space is limited, with pre-registration recommended.
Visitors can also take home a pre-ordered Connecticut cheese plate, pick up beginner cheesemaking kits or dig into one of Caseus Cheese Truck’s indulgent grilled cheese sandwiches. Those who like to play with their food can enter the Cheese Rolling Contest; the winner who rolls a wheel of cheese the farthest is rewarded with the champion cheese to take home.
Admission to the Cheese Festival is free, with separate fees for classes and product purchases. The event begins at 11 a.m.
“Connecticut has a dairying and rich cheese making history, and is experiencing a revival in cheese making culture,” said Civitello of Mystic Cheese, whose soft ripened Melville has sold briskly at Coventry and other markets this year. “…There’s no doubt in my mind that over the next few years Connecticut will prove itself to be on the forefront of the American artisan cheese revolution.”
The Coventry Regional Farmers’ Market is at 2299 South Street in Coventry. For more information about the Connecticut Cheese Festival, or to pre-register for events, visit ctcheese.com.