Cheese tourists set a course for Spain, as Oviedo hosts festival, awards, tours and more
International Cheese Festival / World Cheese Awards
Wednesday 3 – Saturday 6 November 2021
Oviedo in Spain will become the World Cheese Capital this November, when the city plays host to thousands of cheeses and a programme featuring cheese tours, cheese markets, experimental tasting sessions and a live judging event that will crown this year’s top cheese. Inviting cheese lovers from across the globe to celebrate the unique qualities of queso, the cheesemakers, shops, restaurants and venues of Asturias are preparing to stage the largest cheese event the world has ever seen.
Bringing the world’s curd nerds together in Oviedo for four days of homage to fromage, the Asturias Paraíso Natural International Cheese Festival 2021 will present a packed programme of events at the city’s awe-inspiring Palacio de Exposiciones y Congresos. Visitors will have the chance to witness the final judging session of the World Cheese Awards on 3 November, as the Top 16 are re-judged to find this year’s World Champion Cheese, while tours of the colossal judging hall will also be available from 4-6 November, where around 4,000 entries from 40 countries will remain on show.
In the rooms, halls and auditoriums that sit around the judging arena, the festival will host a huge international cheese market, an exhibition showcasing the best food and drink from Asturias and a Gastro Cheese Comedy line-up. A diverse schedule of forums and presentations will also be taking place, as international cheese experts consider the past, present and future of cheese, discussing its role in feeding the planet and the potential for a scientific, economic and social revolution of food through cheese.
Away from the venue, the gastronomic community of Asturias will be ready to introduce holidaymakers to a region where they truly can eat the view; from the peak of the mountains to the depths of the sea.
In a land that produces over 300 types of cheese, visitors can explore the hillside farms of the Picos de Europa, Sueve and Cuera mountains, where dairies are nestled among the grazing herds. These include makers of the world-famous Cabrales, such as Quesería Vega de Tordín and Quesería Artesanal El Cabriteru, while those making the trip to Quesería Maín can also see the caves where the region’s blue jewel in the crown comes of age. At the family-run Quesería Ca Sanchu, cheese lovers can learn about the making of Quesos de Afuega’l Pitu (DOP), while a tour of Quesería Los Caserinos will take visitors through the cheesemaking process, as well as the production of yoghurt and rice pudding.
For those looking to dive even deeper into the world of Asturian cheese, a number of suggested tourist routes are available from Asturias Paraíso Natural, such as an exploration of cheese and cider, as well as an itinerary themed around the production of Gamonéu cheese. Fully guided trips are also available via Asturias Paraíso Natural, including a three-day hiking and 4×4 experience, taking in cheese caves, cider making and natural beauty spots along the way.
Around Oviedo, visitors can find a wealth of Asturian food and drink in shops, cafes and restaurants, including the renowned treasure trove that is Coalla Gourmet, while the Sunday markets of Cangas de Onís and Grado put cheese centre stage, alongside the finest local produce. Finally, no culinary tour of this part of the world would be complete without a good few litres of cider. An iconic drink in Asturian culture, which is seen being ‘thrown’ from above the head around every corner, the cider of Asturias can be enjoyed across the region and visitors can also head to many orchards and cellars for guided tours.
The Asturias Paraíso Natural International Cheese Festival 2021 will be held at the Palacio de Exposiciones y Congresos in Oviedo, Spain from Wednesday 3 – Saturday 6 November, hosting the World Cheese Awards on Wednesday 3 November.
For more information on the event schedule and booking tickets, visit www.internationalcheesefestival.com, and for more on tours and experiences across the Principality of Asturias, visit www.turismoasturias.es.
For further press information, please contact:
Sam Brice at Freshly Ground PR
+44 (0) 7961 635960