Along with hundreds of cheeses to try, there will be jams, jellies and spreads, pickles, honey, breads, crackers, cured meats, gelati, as well as wines from Woodland Wine Merchant, craft beers from Yazoo and other breweries, and nonalcoholic beverages to sip.
Joining returning festival favorites Blackberry Farm, Belle Chevre and Sweet Grass Dairy (among many others) are some cheesemakers new to the festival: Paradox Farm and English Farmstead Cheese from North Carolina, White River Creamery (the first participant from Arkansas), and an honorary Southerner, Marcoot Jersey Creamery from Illinois.
Food artisans joining the lineup this year include Copper Pot & Wooden Spoon from North Carolina with preserves and pickles, European Wine Table from Georgia with wine-based jellies, and Nashville’s own Soberdough beer-bread mixes.
Tickets are on sale now and — new this year — are two additional ticket levels for the event. The Patron level includes lots of extras, such as admission to the Curds and Cocktails kick-off event on Sept. 26, and was established for folks who want ensure that even more proceeds go to the event’s charity, Community Food Advocates by sponsoring the accommodations for one of the festival’s vendors. There’s also an “economy” ticket that gets you into the festival a little bit later than Patron, VIP and general admission ticketholders. It’s possible you may miss out on a few items that have limited quantities, but at last year’s event, I saw that many vendors still had plenty of samples left even at the end.
Details about ticket levels and what’s included with each (as well as information about the Curds and Cocktails party on Friday night) are available on the website.
Another great option if you want to attend the festival but are low on food fest funds is to volunteer. Community Food Advocates will be posting shifts for volunteers through Hands On Nashville and those who pitch in that way receive a discount for tickets. A portion of all ticket sales will go to Community Food Advocates.
Now for the fun part: One lucky Bites reader will win a pair of general admission tickets! To enter (one entry per person, please), just leave a comment here indicating which of the cheesemakers on the roster you’re most excited to try (or see again, if you’ve attended in the past). Enter any time between now and 1 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 12. Check back that afternoon to see if you’ve won.
Southern Artisan Cheese Festival
Saturday, Sept. 27
3 to 6 p.m. (early admission for Patron and VIP ticketholders)
1319 Adams St., Nashville
Tickets: $29 to $250 each (+ tax) in advance (suggested)
All ages welcome