“The small Washington Artisan Cheesemakers Festival, which debuted this spring at the Seattle Design Center, could acquire increased local importance with the cancellation of the popular Seattle Cheese Festival.
“It’s kind of the logical “replacement”, if you will,” writes Tami Parr, a cheese blogger and author of Artisan Cheese of the Pacific Northwest. “It’s a little different in that it focuses exclusively on artisan cheesemakers, charges an entry fee, etc. Perhaps for this sort of thing, that’s the way to go.”
According to a farewell message posted this week by festival founder Pat McCarthy of DeLaurenti Food & Wine, the eight-year old festival was done in by its massive size. The Pike Place Market festival regularly attracted 35,000 visitors over its weekend run, a number which many cheese sellers found overwhelming.
“Over the last couple of years, the festival has become kind of like Yogi Berra’s quote, ‘Nobody goes there anymore, it’s too crowded.’,” McCarthy wrote. “Attendance by cheese makers and distributors has fallen off sharply.””