Mooooving Day – Transhumance and the Impact on Dairy Cultures

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Every spring, Swiss dairy farmer Béat Piller escorts his 56 cows up the slope of the 6,000-foot Alp Vounetz to a grazing pasture and hand-built stable. They will stay there for the next six months, making milk and cheese every single day. In late autumn, they will descend back down to the valley where his family lives year-round. It’s a routine that has existed for millenia.

This seasonal shifting, called transhumance, is not uniquely Swiss. Similar journeys are found in Italy, Argentina, France, Brazil…pretty much everywhere on earth where herd animals and mountains or highlands co-exist. While it may seem like a lot of work to simply let animals graze on “the grass up there”, its actually a brilliant solution designed to help valley communities grow and thrive. 
Do join us to learn more about this elegant cultural practice with culinary educator and author Adam Centamore. He’ll discuss the history, how it works, and why it matters. Beyond the nuts and bolts of transhumance, Adam will also share some secrets of how seasonal grazing impacts some of the world’s favorite alpine cheeses like Swiss Gruyère, Emmentaler, and French Comté, and how to seek out these curdy treasures.
Using pictures, stories, and artifacts from his first-hand experiences with transhumance, Adam will share his love of cheese, culture, and culinary travel in what is sure to be an entertaining, informative evening. 

Wednesday, January 25th, 2023
7 p.m. Central Time
Presented Via ZOOM

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Notes from the presentation:

Adam Centamore:
Cheeses mentioned: Gruyere Alpage, Comté, Grand Cru, Extra Grand Cru
Wine: Chignin (Jacquere), Chasselas, Pinot Blanc, legit Pinot Grigoi, Poulsard, Lagrein, Pinot Nero, Schiava