Marion Roeleveld of Killeen Farmhouse Cheese was named the Supreme Champion at the biennial Cáis Irish Cheese Awards presented in Cork recently.
The winning five-month matured Killeen Goats Cheese is produced in Co Galway, and is included in the Simply Better Dunnes Stores range.
It was a third Irish Cheese Awards Supreme Championship for Killeen Farmhouse Cheese, which has also won several international awards in recent years, such as three Best Cheese wins and several gold medals in the British Cheese Awards, and a Best Irish win at the World Cheese Awards.
The winner of the Public Vote, with more than 1,000 votes from members of the public, was the Macroom, Co Cork based Coolea Farmhouse Cheese.
The Cáis Appreciation Award was presented to 2019 awards judge Dr Kieran Jordan.
Since the previous awards ceremony in 2017, a range of new cheeses and cheesemakers have emerged, and the New Cheese winners were Dozio of Mayo’s Barr Rua Alpine Style cheese (gold medalist); Knockanore Farmhouse (Co Waterford) Cheese’s Allenwood Smoked (silver medalist); and Kilnalahan produced by Galway’s Kylemore Farmhouse Cheese (bronze medalist).
2019 Irish Cheese Awards Gold Medal Winners
- Creamery mild cheddar up to 6 months – Aldi Irish Mild White Cheddar produced by Glanbia.
- Creamery mature cheddar over six months – SuperValu Signature Taste Vintage Red Cheddar (counter product) produced by Newmarket Creamery.
- Retailer Class (soft, semi-soft, flavour added) – SuperValu Signature Tastes Gortnamona produced by Cooleeney Farmhouse.
- Retailer Class (hard cheese) – Dunnes Stores Simply Better Five-Month Matured Killeen Goats Cheese produced by Killeen Farmhouse Cheese.
- Soft/Fresh Cheese (all milks) – Bluebell Falls Cream Cheese produced by Bluebell Falls.
- Goats Cheese under two months – Gurteen Baun Button produced by Galway Goat Farm.
- Goats Cheese over two months – Killeen Goat Mature produced by Killeen Farmhouse Cheese.
- Sheep’s Cheese – Shepherd’s Store produced by Cashel Farmhouse Cheesemakers.
- Washed Rind Cheese – Gubbeen produced by Gubbeen Farmhouse Products.
- Blue Cheese – Crozier Blue produced by Cashel Farmhouse Cheesemakers.
- Semi hard to hard cheese aged over six months – Coolea Mature produced by Coolea Farmhouse Cheese.
- Semi hard cheese aged under six months – Dunmanus produced by Durrus Cheese.
- Soft Cheese, Flavour Added – Zing with Apricot & Almond produced by Dozio’s of Mayo.
- Hard Cheese, Flavour added – Coolea Mature Cumin produced by Coolea Farmhouse Cheese.
- Smoked Cheese – Knockanore Oakwood Smoked Cheddar produced by Knockanore Farmhouse Cheese.
- New Cheese (last two years) – Barr Rua Alpine Style produced by Dozios of Mayo.
- Best Raw Milk Cheese – Templegall produced by Hegarty Cheese.
- New Cheesemaker since 2016 - Boyne Valley Bán produced by Boyne Valley Farmhouse Cheese.
Bord Bia Chairman Dan MacSweeney said: “While these awards recognise individual excellence, all 68 farmhouse cheesemakers can take an equal share of the credit for the outstanding contribution that the sector, valued at €12m, has made to the Irish dairy industry, our culinary culture and to local communities.”