Posted: 26/11/2015

Gruyère AOP tops World Cheese Awards for fourth time

WCA champion Le Gruyère AOP
René Ruch of Cremo SA (centre) collects the World Champion trophy from World Cheese Awards organiser John Farrand (right) and awards founder Bob Farrand

Ten years after its last victory, a Gruyère AOP Premier Cru has taken the World Champion trophy in the World Cheese Awards, held today (November 26) at the BBC Good Food Show in Birmingham.

It’s the fourth time the Swiss alpine cheese has won the trophy in the 28 years of the competition, which is organised by the Guild of Fine Food.

The cheese was selected after more than 250 judges whittled a record 2,727 entries down to a shortlist of 16, which were assessed again by a final jury including experts from Italy, France, Australia, Japan and the US.

The winning Gruyère AOP, from Cremo SA’s von Mühlenen brand, collected 69 points out of possible 80 from the judging panel, beating two cheeses into joint second place by just one point.

They were a Tomme Chevre Brebis, from Onetik in the French Basque country, and a burrata from London-based Italian foods importer La Credenza.

World Cheese Awards founder Bob Farrand, who was on the final panel, said he could have felt “jaundiced” about a cheese that was so familiar to him. “But then, ‘wow’: the fruitiness, the nuttiness – the flavour just kept going and going.”

Italian judge Davide Firori, from Luigi Guffanti 1876, said: “I love this cheese because it represents everything I look for: it’s not just for eating – it’s for talking about with friends. It has what the French call terroir, because the taste tells you so much about the pastures it comes from.”

Cremo SA’s René Ruch, manager for von Muhlenen, said: “To win again and again is fantastic, and to win against all these amazing cheeses is a real honour.”

Over 60 cheeses were awarded Supergolds this year, selected from the best cheese on each judging team’s table.

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