Now in its eighth year, the Cheesemonger Invitational in Long Island City brings out some of the best cheesemongers across the city and country to determine who is the biggest curd nerd of them all. Aside from testing their cheese-cutting skills (fart jokes fly at this otherwise refined event) in ¼-, ⅓-, and ½-pound servings of their product on the fly, participants are challenged to whip up the perfect amuse-bouche–size dish with their signature cheese of choice. The purveyor list this year is packed; with local faves like Murray’s Cheese, Lucy’s Whey, Bedford Cheese Shop, and Campbell Cheese & Grocery partaking, how could you be disappointed?
If you thought you’d only get one sample per monger (which is standard protocol at many culinary exhibitions and festivals), prepare to be pleasantly surprised. Aside from plain old bites of Roquefort and Stilton, there are plenty of cheesy dishes on offer: ooey-gooey grilled cheeses, mac and cheese, Gruyère fondue, out-of-the-box flatbreads, and a raclette station that can only be described as an over-the-top cheese experience. To wash it all down, local ciders and brews (thankfully not cheese-themed) will be free-flowing.
Why You Should Go: This is essentially like the Olympics…except with a lot more Cheddar and minus the physical activity (unless chewing counts).
Larkin Cold Storage
47-55 27th Street, Long Island City
Saturday, June 24
While you’re checking out the cheese, check out the rest of Long Island City, too: