Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Tours! Tours! Tours! Tours!

I'm not sure what you do when you get bored, but when I'm tired of sitting at my desk writing about cheesemakers, I organize a tour to go see them. Then I take 20 people along with me. Sound like fun? Here's 4 upcoming tours in 2012 in which I'd love for you to join me!

Tickets on Sale Now
Sept. 21 - 22: The Driftless Region Artisan Cheese & Craft Beer Tour
If you've ever wanted a backstage pass to Wisconsin's artisan cheese plants and craft breweries, this exclusive two-day tour is the bee's knees. Get an inside look as to why the cheese and beer produced in the Driftless Region of Southwest Wisconsin is routinely judged as some of the best in the world. Limited to just 20 people, this overnight adventure includes custom tours and tastings at:
Plus, we'll indulge in a fabulous local-foods dinner and overnight bed and breakfast stay at The Roth House and Old Oak Inn in Soldiers Grove. Tour price includes all meals, tours, tastings, accommodations and transportation via air-conditioned motorcoach. Reserve your spot by July 15. Price: $345 per person, based on double occupancy. $395 for single travelers. View a detailed itinerary by clicking here. Save your seat by clicking here.


Tickets to go on sale in September

Nov. 9:  Driftless Cheeses of Wisconsin
It’s been called the Napa Valley of the Midwest, and for good reason. With its own micro-climate of plentiful rainfall, sweet soils and limestone-filtered water, the unglaciated corner of Southwest Wisconsin is dairy paradise. 

Start out the day with a tour at Uplands Cheese in Dodgeville, where you’ll meet Cheesemaker Andy Hatch and tour the farmstead creamery crafting the best-known cheese in America: Pleasant Ridge Reserve. Then motor to Cedar Grove Cheese in Plain and meet Bob Wills, Wisconsin’s chief incubator of up-and-coming cheesemakers. You’ll tour this historic cheese factory as well as the facility’s “Living Machine,” a working ecosystem using natural microbes and a collection of hydroponic plants to biologically treat cheese wastewater back into clean water that is discharged into nearby Honey Creek. 

After lunch and time for shopping at the charming General Store in downtown Spring Green, you’ll cruise to Dreamfarm in Cross Plains to meet Cheesemaker Diana Murphy, ooh and ahh over her super cute herd of milking goats and pastured chickens, and taste her farmstead goat’s milk cheeses. Scenic views of rolling hills and winding rivers from the expansive windows of a luxury bus included for free.

This customized, small-group tour is part of the Fourth Annual Wisconsin Original Cheese Festival (come for the whole weekend) and will depart Madison at 7:45 a.m. and return to Madison by 5 p.m. Limited to 20 people, with time for personal conversations with cheesemakers at a casual and enjoyable pace. Price: $115 per person. Includes transportation via an executive air-conditioned motor coach, specially-arranged lunches, custom tours, and cheese tastings at each stop. Tickets go on sale in September.

Nov. 9: Green County Cheese & Beer Experience
Saddle up for a day of eating cheese and drinking beer, folks. You’ll motor in a luxury bus to fabulous Green County, home to more than a dozen cheese plants in a 585-square mile area. First up: a tour and tasting with Cheesemaker Myron Olson at Chalet Cheese Cooperative, home to World Champion Baby Swiss and the only cheese factory in North America still making Limburger, the king of stinky cheese. 

You’ll have a chance to cleanse your palate at the next stop: Minhas Brewery in downtown Monroe, where dairy maids will lead a 1-hour tour and tasting of some of the finest craft beers made in Wisconsin. Lunch is up the street at Baumgartner’s, one of Wisconsin’s best-loved and historic taverns. If you’re lucky, the bartenders might even flip a dollar bill on the ceilings while you’re there! 

Round out the afternoon at Emmi Roth USA in Monroe with a tour of the company’s impressive Gruyere aging rooms, and an exclusive cheese tasting in their elegant Culinary Center. Word to the wise: bring a pillow, as you’ll most likely be napping on a full stomach all the way home.

This customized, small-group tour is part of the Fourth Annual Wisconsin Original Cheese Festival (come for the whole weekend) and will depart Madison at 7:45 a.m. and return to Madison by 5 p.m. Limited to 20 people, with time for personal conversations with cheesemakers at a casual and enjoyable pace. Price: $115 per person. Includes transportation via an executive air-conditioned motor coach, specially-arranged lunches, custom tours, and cheese tastings at each stop. Tickets go on sale in September.


Nov. 9: Wisconsin Farmstead Dairy Backstage Pass
More than 20 farmstead dairies have sprouted in Wisconsin in the last 10 years, and this tour gives you a backstage pass to two of the best. You’ll start your day with Cheesemaker George Crave at Crave Brothers Farmstead Cheese in Waterloo, with a tour of the cheese factory, followed by a farm tour and opportunity to get up-close-and-personal with farm cows and calves. Afterward, enjoy an elegant cheese tasting and lunch in the Craves’ new on-farm Culinary Center, where you’ll taste the Crave cheeses in exciting new dishes. 

Next, motor in your luxury bus to Sassy Cow Creamery in Columbus for a dairy plant tour of milk bottling and ice cream making with owner James Baerwolf. After ordering your choice of ice cream cone, milkshake or sundae, you’ll tour the Baerwolf dairy farms, where each brother milks a herd of organic and conventional cows. 

End the day with a private cheese tasting at Fromagination in Madison, where you’ll have a chance to taste a half dozen of the best farmstead cheeses from Wisconsin. We promise you won’t go home hungry.

This customized, small-group tour is part of the Fourth Annual Wisconsin Original Cheese Festival (come for the whole weekend) and will depart Madison at 7:45 a.m. and return to Madison by 5 p.m. Limited to 20 people, with time for personal conversations with cheesemakers at a casual and enjoyable pace. Price: $115 per person. Includes transportation via an executive air-conditioned motor coach, specially-arranged lunches, custom tours, and cheese tastings at each stop. Tickets go on sale in September.

To stay updated on all tours, tastings, dinners and events regarding Wisconsin artisan cheesemakers, visit www.WisconsinCheeseOriginals.com -- membership is only $35 per family or company! I'd love to see you at my next cheesy event.

6 comments:

Ricky Ricotta said...

This is fantastic, thank you! I wish I lived closer to Wisconsin. Your resources are really fantastic as well. I will be in Madison, WI over the summer sometime. Do you have any favorite cheese-related activities in and around Madison? I also write a cheese blog, with 2 friends, based out of Cambridge, MA. Were are at: http://www.fromagedumois.org/. BEst,
Seth

Ricky Ricotta said...

Thank you for this information, this is fantastic! I wish I lived closer to Wisconsin. I enjoy your posts a lot. I will actually be in Madison, WI later this summer-- do you have any cheese-related activities you recommend, in and around Madison? I actually write a cheese blog myself. Check it out at: http://fromagedumois.org., out of Cambridge, MA. Thanks a lot.
Seth

Ricky Ricotta said...

Thank you for this information, this is fantastic! I wish I lived closer to Wisconsin. I enjoy your posts a lot. I will actually be in Madison, WI later this summer-- do you have any cheese-related activities you recommend, in and around Madison? I actually write a cheese blog myself. Check it out at: http://fromagedumois.org., out of Cambridge, MA. Thanks a lot.
Seth

ThePeSla said...

I love the photos on this post.

I don't think California cheese can really beat Wisconsin cheeses.

Thanks,

L. Edgar Otto (ThePeSla)

Go Pack!

Dr Burger said...

Nice! I only recently checked out your blog, but have enjoyed the post and will be back to read more.

Luxury Tours ireland said...

It is a great experience to read about your cheesy tour and it seems to me like that you had a very memorable and beautiful tour of that place.