SA Cheese Festival 2010 review



The Cheese Festival seems to get bigger every year and it also seems that more of the days sell out each year as well. I hear many stories of people who get there only to find that there are no tickets left. The popularity of the event has some benefits, the stall holders see more traffic and the attendees get to enjoy a festive event.

But the size of the event also comes at a price. The smaller stall holders can’t afford to be there, not only because of the cost of the stand but also the amount of produce they have to give away and the fact that they are lost in a sea of stands. If you were to ask someone what cheese they just tasted, few would be able to remember the name of the stand, let alone the cheese. This means that there are less small producers and interesting products, a shame for those who are actually going for the cheese.

For the visitors, apart from the emphasis on big producers which makes it less interesting, the size of the event also means that getting a taste of cheese and some face time with the person representing the product is almost impossible.

Despite these negatives, I think it’s still a worthwhile event. But to get the most out of it, you have to accept it for what it is. The cheese festival is a fun day out. It’s kid friendly and there are many things to keep you entertained with plenty of food options to sustain you.

You will get to taste cheese, but very few that are out of the ordinary. You will be able to buy cheese at a good price and olive oil, wine and other goodies too. You may encounter some new products, you may also learn something at a stand or at one of the cooking demonstrations. You will find a tasty lunch option and you could find a nice spot to sit in the sunshine and enjoy your food while listening to the live music (which is not that great). Your kids will love the petting zoo and being able to run around.

All these things make for a great day out, but it’s not about the cheese.


4 responses to “SA Cheese Festival 2010 review”

  1. I didnt go this year, last year was my last time as I didnt enjoy it last year or the year before. The focus of most people who go seems to be “CHEAP BOOZE LETS GET HAMMERED” and every time I tried to chat to a vendor I got shoved out the way so some one could grab some free tasters before moving on.

  2. Agreed. It used to be fantastic, but with the larger crowds it just isn’t the same anymore.

  3. Totally agree with you. It’s not quite so hectic if you can go on the week days instead of the fully booked weekends, but I think these days your local market is probably a way better place to find interesting cheeses (and be able to chat to the person who made them without interference!) so if that’s your focus (rather than taking advantage of loads of free wine tasters), you’re likely to be disappointed.

  4. Just found your blog and almost immediately subscribed. Its nice to find a fellow Cape Town-based blogger, esp one with a keen interest in restaurants.

    I enjoyed the cheese festival this year but agree with what you say entirely. However, this wont deter me from going next year.

    Great blog 🙂