Washington Artisan Cheesemakers Festival returns this fall

Washington Artisan Cheesemakers Festival

After a two-year hiatus, the Washington Artisan Cheesemakers Festival will return to the Seattle Design Center on September 17, 2022. 

Guests can sample from a large selection of Washington cheeses and learn about every step of cheese production, from the animal breeds and their diets to the aging and flavoring process. They can also get tips from experts and try pairing the cheeses with other local artisan foods, including jams, cured meats, chocolate and honey. 

Cheese samples on display at the Washington Artisan Cheesemakers Festival

Cheese buyers, on the other hand, will have the opportunity to re-connect with cheese makers during the invitation-only industry networking session before the festival doors open to the public.

People’s Choice Award winners will be selected by attendees during the festival. In 2019, Tieton Farm and Creamery won first place for their Rheba, a soft-ripened, washed-rind goat and sheep mixed milk cheese.

Guests will also notice some changes made to this year’s festival to make it more appropriate for the pandemic era. It will be held in two separate sessions and attendance will be capped at 50% capacity to avoid overcrowding. Additional Covid-19 safety measures may be introduced later based on recommendations and requirements by local public health officials.

The festival is a benefit for the Washington State Cheesemakers Association (WASCA), a non-profit organization whose mission is to support Washington cheese makers through education, promotion and collaboration. General admission tickets are $45 and are available to purchase in advance at www.washingtonartisancheese.com. It is a 21-and-over-only event.