SHULLSBURG (WKOW) -- The funny thing about competition is it brings out a sense of both humility and hopefulness.
Chris Roelli took Best of Show at this year's American Cheese Society competition with Little Mountain, while Emmi Roth USA was crowned World Champion at the World Championship Cheese Contest for its Grand Cru Surchoix. Both cheeses are washed rind alpine-style cheeses.
"It is a small production cheese for us, so it's not something that we ever anticipate mass producing," Roelli said.
But demand hits, and for cheesemakers, the honeymoon of winning is short, and then it's back to business.
The same scenario happened at Emmi Roth USA.
"Of our total production for two years, one customer, one order took all of that production," Tim Omer, President of Emmi Roth USA said. "But we've ramped up our production to be able to account for that, so we have lots of cheese."
Ask any cheesemaker and they will say that it all starts with the milk--and maybe a bit of artistry as well!
"Great milk source, great cheesemakers, great history, the flora, the fauna, the provenance of this area, I think that's what it says about winning all those awards," Omer said.