2010 Harvest Fair Food Winners

Food winners announced

Though many of Sonoma County’s chefs, purveyors and winemakers receive accolades far beyond Wine Country, the annual Harvest Fair Awards are a purely local commendation of the region’s favorites.
So whet your whistle, then head to Sept. 25th’s Awards Night Gala to taste, sip and celebrate all of the winning food and wines selected this year. Here are the winners in the food categories…
Dairy: This long-overlooked category was revived in 2010, spearheaded by local cheesemaker and caterer Sheana Davis. “I felt it was time to revive the Dairy competition, since we we have so many amazing dairy producers joining in the cheesemaking production of Sonoma County, which includes artisan butters, farmstead cheeses and so many unique and regional new dairy products. In our judging of more than 30 entries, we tasted raw goat milk cheeses, aged cow milk cheese, fresh goat milk cheeses, yogurts, butters and yet this was just the beginning,” she said. Petaluma Creamery took top honors in the aged cow cheese category (Monterey Jack won gold); Redwood Hill Farms in the fresh goat cheese category, rined goat cheese (Cameo) and aged goat cheese (smoked cheddar). Valley Ford Cheese Company won Double Gold for its Estero Gold Montasio and Highway 1 Fontina. Spring Hill Jersey captured Double Gold and Best in Show for its Peppercorn Goat Farmstead Cheese. McClelland’s Dairy won top awards for its European Style Organic Artisan Butter, while Green Valley Organics and Redwood Hill Farm both took medals for their yogurts.
Olive Oil: Ferrari-Carano Vineyards Vintners Inn Estate Olive Oil was  named Best of Show Olive Oil. According to Cheryl McMillan  of Ferrari-Carano Vineyards, the winning oil is a blend of all the olives grown on the Vintners Inn Estate:  coratina, frantoio, leccino, maurino, and pendolino.  The judges were impressed with the balance of fruit,  bitterness and pungency of the winning oil.
Desserts: Brasserie at the Hyatt took Best in Show and Beset use of Local Products for its Swedish Cream Cannolis, while Oliver’s Markets won the Sweepstakes Dessert Award for its desserts. Oliver’s also won Best in Show for its decorated wedding cake and honey caramel nut tart in the pastry division.
Best of Show Wine List: Carneros Bistro at the Lodge. Dry Creek Kitchen won Best Sonoma County Wine List.
Best Deli/Charcuterie: Newcomer Yanni’s Sausage won Best Charcuteries for its Loukaniko Pork Rustic Country Sausage, while Bear Republic Brewing won Best of Show Delicatessen for its Wild Game Chili.
Appetizer and bread categories have a variety of classes, but top contenders in the Appetizer category included Brasserie at the Hyatt for their Best Use of Sonoma County Cheese, BBQ Smokehouse Catering for the BBQ Beef Brisket (Best use of SoCo Beef) A La Heart Catering for best use of Seafood and Poultry and Grapevine Catering for Best use of Lamb and Wine. In the breads category, Costeaux French Bakery won Best in Show for its Ciabatta and Multigrain breads. Winning double golds were Franco American Bakery for their Sweet French Roll and Nightingale Breads for their Forestville French Baguette.
The 2010 Sonoma County Harvest Fair takes place October 1-3 at the Sonoma County Fairgrounds. More information click here.