Food News

Vermont Cheesemakers’ Festival a must for foodies, localvores

Imagine over 200 Vermont cheeses—ranging from hard to find cheeses such as the Sage Sheep Farm “Sterling,” to well-loved favorites like Cabot’s clothbound cheddar—under the same tent with freshly baked artisan bread, locally-made chocolates, and a crisp glass of chardonnay from one of Vermont’s up and coming vineyards. The annual Vermont Cheesemakers’ Festival is coming up on July 22 and it’s one summer event foodies and localvores will not want to miss.

In addition to endless rows of glorious cheese, there is a cheesemaking demonstration and a live cooking show that are free with admission. The two seminars—“Vermont Wine and Cheese Pairing” and “How Cheese Works”—require a separate $45 ticket, and are well worth the price of admission.

The Festival was started by Allison Hooper of Vermont Butter & Cheese Creamery as a way to celebrate Vermont’s diverse group of cheesemakers. Held on the picturesque shores of Lake Champlain at Shelburne Farms, the sell-out event attracts cheese fans from around the country. Tickets are available at while they last!

Blast is proud to be a sponsor of the Vermont Cheesemakers’ Festival.


Vermont Creamery Toasted Bijou Salad

This article comes from our friends at the Vermont Cheesemakers Festival, which Blast is proud to sponsor!


  • 4 leeks, the white and light-green section only, cut in half lengthwise and washed
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 4 Bijou, cut in half horizontally
  • 8 slices French baguette, ¾ inch thick
  • 1 head romaine lettuce, trimmed, washed, and spun
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, cut in half


  1. Pat dry and toss leeks with a splash of olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Broil in the oven for about 5 minutes until tender but not mushy! Let the leeks cool, then chop thinly and put in a medium-size bowl.
  2. Prepare the dressing. Mix together the mustard, vinegar, olive oil, and leeks, and let sit for 4 hours to 1 week.
  3. Put a medallion of the Bijou, rind facing up, on each baguette piece and place under the broiler until the cheese is soft to a little runny. The rind should be slightly golden (about 2 to 3 minutes).
  4. Serve immediately over mixed greens tossed in the leek vinaigrette and the tomatoes.