Artisan Cheese Lovers Unite in Cannon Falls

Becca Dilley / Heavy Table / File

Do you prefer your wedge of cheese to be semi-hard or soft ripened? Mild or sharp? These and several more, all of them made locally by artisanal cheese makers, will be available for tasting at Ferndale Market, Cannon Falls, MN on Saturday, February 18 from 11 to 2 during Local, Artisan Cheese Day.

“We are so lucky to have a diverse mix of award-winning cheeses made right in our region,” said John Peterson, Ferndale Market’s General Manager. “One of the real joys of local food is having the chance to meet the producers behind these great products, and that’s what this day is all about.”

The cheeses to be sampled at this free event include Amablu Gorgonzola , St. Pete’s Select Blue, and Fini Cheddar, all aged in Faribault Dairy Company’s historic caves (below). LaClare Farms’ Evalon aged goat cheese (top) from Chilton, WI, bears a hint of asiago flavor, according to some tasters. The popular Juusto baked cheeses from Cashton, WI, bring back memories of old-style Scandinavian specialties to some of Ferndale Market’s regulars. The cheese makers themselves will offer up tastes from 11-2 and then, at noon, a few remarks and a Q & A session. They are Katie Hedric of LaClare Farms, Jeanne Kenevan from Faribault Dairy, and Bentley Lein, Pasture Pride Cheese, making them a sort of three-way summit of local cheese experts.

Becca Dilley / Heavy Table / File

Widmer’s aged cheddar and traditional Wisconsin brick will be sampled by Ferndale staff, as well as the Bent River Camembert using milk sourced from Cedar Summit Dairy in New Prague. In addition to the sampling, Ferndale Market has promised to have a little fun with a cheese trivia contest that day, and a few lucky winners will take home (what else?) local cheese!

If you’re making the short drive to Cannon Falls on February 18th for Ferndale’s Local, Artisan Cheese Day, be sure to leave time for a stop at Cannon River Winery’s annual Artist Gallery that happens to be the same day. There’s nothing like a quick road trip of cheese, wine, and art to brighten the winter blues!

WHAT: Local, Artisan Cheese Day at Ferndale Market
Ferndale Market
31659 County 24 Blvd
Cannon Falls, MN 55009
One block west of 52 in Cannon Falls. If coming from the metro, take a right at the first set of stoplights.
WHEN: Saturday, February 18, 11am – 2pm