It’s time to announce the first six months of our 2020 lineup of educational & tasting classes at Firefly Coffeehouse & Artisan Cheese in downtown Oregon, Wisconsin. This year, we’re offering 6 different classes with Sara Hill, an inducted member of the Guilde Internationale Des Fromagers & Jeanne Carpenter, an American Cheese Society Certified Cheese Professional and owner of Firefly Coffeehouse. (For their full bios, scroll down).
All tickets must be purchased in advance and may be found at www.cheesetickets.com.
January 26: American Artisan Cheese & Charcuterie Pairings
Americans have come a long way from eating just summer sausage and cheddar. Today, there are a wide variety of artisan cheeses and small-batch charcuterie to discover. Taste and learn the stories of four such pairings, plus enjoy a glass of wine or beer of your choosing. Tickets: $27/each
February 16: Cheese & Wine of California
Wisconsin is America’s Dairyland, but California is America’s Wine Country. Many cheesemakers – some trained in Wisconsin – are opening farmstead and artisan cheese factories in northern California. Taste and learn about four favorite California wines and four favorite artisan cheeses, then enjoy perfect pairings. Tickets: $33/each
March 15: Hook’s Cheeses & Cider Farm Pairings
Experience the terroir – or taste of place – of Mineral Point, Wisconsin, home to two of the country’s best cheese factories and cider farms. We’ll pair four artisan Hook’s Cheeses with four different ciders from The Cider Farm, where owners have spent the past 15 years painstakingly hand-grafting apple trees to grow heirloom varieties for English- and French-style ciders. Tickets: $33/each
April 19: Blue Cheese & Port – Made for Each Other
Pairing Port and cheese is a classic food and wine combination, but have you paired Port with Blue Cheese? Brace yourself for magical goodness. Taste four stellar Blues and four amazing Port wines. Tickets: $33/each
May 17: Wine & Cheeses of Spain – Regional Pairings
Spanish cheeses and wines are lesser known in America than their French or Italian counterparts, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t just as good. Your guides: Sara & Jeanne, have each traveled and visited several cheesemakers and winemakers in Spain. They bring their experiences and expertise to the evening. Tickets: $33/each
June 14: June Dairy Month: The Best of Wisconsin Artisan Cheese: Stories & Tastings
Before buying a coffee shop, Jeanne spent 15 years working with Wisconsin cheesemakers, helping them develop new artisan cheeses and cultivating their stories in the American marketplace. Hear the stories of four of her and Sara’s favorites – the back stories of how some of Wisconsin’s most famous cheeses came to be. Tickets: $27/each
More about your class leaders:
Sara Hill has been involved in the specialty food world with a concentration on cheese for 37 years. She graduated from the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park N.Y in 1976 and cooked at clubs and resorts until 1982 when she was hired by the first cheese importer in the upper Midwest. She continued to be involved in cheese distribution and working with chefs and retailers, helping key store groups develop cheese programs, until 2006 when she left distribution to work with Sid Cook at Carr Valley Cheese as his first National Sales Manager. In 2008, she joined the Dairy Farmers of Wisconsin as Manager of Cheese Education and was involved with training chefs and retailers about Wisconsin Cheese. In 2018 she joined Hook’s Cheese as National Sales Manager. She is a former board member of the American Cheese Society and has been inducted into the Guilde Internationale Des Fromagers.
Jeanne Carpenter is an award-winning journalist, former spokesperson for the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, and worked several years as a specialty cheese buyer for Metcalfe’s Markets in Wisconsin. Today, she and her husband, Uriah, own and run Firefly Coffeehouse & Artisan Cheese in their hometown of Oregon, Wisconsin, and are committed to building a community gathering place for folks who like good coffee, good food & good cheese.