I’ve been writing about Wisconsin artisan cheesemakers on this blog now for about a year and a half. In exciting news, I now get to talk about Wisconsin cheeses in a series of educational classes I’ll be leading at a new artisan cheese shop opening in downtown Madison in September.
Fromagination, located at 12 S. Carroll St. in Madison, Wisconsin, will open on Friday, Sept. 28. Starting soon thereafter, I’ll offer my first class showcasing exclusive Wisconsin artisan cheeses. In fact, the shop will offer only cut-to-order Wisconsin artisan cheeses for the first four weeks it’s open — a first for America’s Dairyland. From opening date to the end of October, more than 20 of the state’s finest artisan cheesemakers and dozens of cheeses will be showcased! Then, just in time for the holidays, Fromagination will add artisan cheeses from around the United States and world.
The shop will showcase a wide array of perfect companions paired specifically with each individual cheese, including select wines, beers, meats, breads, and other specialty foods. During the month of October, I will be offering a series of several fun and educational courses including:
Cheese 101 – an introduction into the pure joy of trying new cheeses. Offered Tuesday evening on Oct. 23.
Wisconsin Cheeses – explore Wisconsin’s stunning diversity from aged cheddar to washed rind originals. Offered Tuesday evening Oct. 9.
American Craft Beer & Cheese – have you heard that beer and cheese is the new wine and cheese? Beercook.com author Lucy Saunders joins me in leading this class in which we’ll pair a flight of six craft beers and artisanal cheeses. Offered Tuesday evening on Oct. 16.
Email me if you’d like specific class descriptions, information on how to sign up and a 25 percent off coupon (the cheese shop website isn’t quite up to full speed yet).
If nothing else, you really must visit Fromagination when it opens to truly appreciate what owner Ken Monteleone has done with the space: drawing from the landscape of Wisconsin’s countryside, Fromagination is rustic redefined.
Inside, the shop uses 85 percent sustainable and recycled vintage materials including barn wood, American earth plaster, milk protein paint, and corrugated tin. The absolutely stunning floor is crafted from reclaimed slate tiles from an abandoned warehouse in Chicago. In addition to amazing cheese, visitors will find one-of-a-kind gifts and cheese accessories, books, vintage items and a made-to-order sandwich counter. There’s literally a surprise behind every corner.
I look forward to seeing old friends and making new ones during cheese classes in the next few weeks!