2 Swiss cheeses rated among the 5 best in the world
Be it rolling it across the country, melting it down into fondue or rating it in competitions, Swiss cheese has a peculiar habit of being among the nation’s headlines. Now, after a Swiss Gruyère took first in the World Cheese Awards in 2022, two entries from Switzerland found themselves in the top five for 2023, but sadly, did not take the win.
World Cheese Awards 2023
On October 27, cheese fans from around the world gathered in the Norwegian town of Trondheim to cheer on their favourites at the 35th World Cheese Awards. Over 4.500 different fromages from 43 nations around the world participated in the competition, in the hopes of being crowned “World’s Best Cheese” for 2023.
A 264-person strong international jury nibbled the entries down to a final 100, before a super jury of cheese boffins produced a shortlist of just 16. From there, the winning candidates were selected by a public vote.
Switzerland does well, but fails to win
Sadly, despite a good showing, Switzerland's cheeses failed to replicate their success from 2022, with a blue cheese from the Norwegian port of Trøndelag winning the title. Nidelven Blå took the gold with an impressive 102 out of 112 possible points.
On the company’s website, Nidelven Blå is described as a “strong blue cheese”, which is paired best with figs and a glass of port. “It’s got so much power and so much love”, one of the award ceremony hosts said.
In second with 100 points was the Baliehof Houtlandse Asche kaas - a cheese from Belgium famous for the blue-grey layer of ash present in the middle of the cheese. It was praised by the jury for its strong taste and melt-in-your-mouth texture.
Eberle Würzig rated the best cheese in Switzerland (and third in the world)
Of the 16 cheeses given “Super Gold” status by the awards, two were from Switzerland. In third place overall was Eberle Würzig from the Muolen village cheese dairy near St. Gallen, scoring 97 points out of 112. The cheese was praised for its spicy and aromatic flavour, bolstered by raw Swiss milk and up to 10 months of maturation. It also won the prize for “Best Swiss Cheese”.
Müller-Thurgau Rezent from Amriswil, a hard, strong-flavoured yet creamy cheese full of spice and aroma, came joint-fourth with 95 points. The Swiss entry shared fourth with Eleftheria Brunost, a Norwegian-style whey cheese made in India. In terms of other awards, the title of best Gruyère cheese went to - unsurprisingly - Le Gruyère AOP.
Best cheeses in the world in 2023
In all, here are the 10 best cheeses in the world, as chosen by the World Cheese Awards:
- 1. Nidelven Blå, Norway (102)
- 2. Baliehof Houtlandse Asche kaas, Belgium (100)
- 3. Eberle Würzig, Switzerland (97)
- =4. Eleftheria Brunost, India (95)
- =4. Müller-Thurgau Rezent, Switzerland (95)
- =6. Kärntnermilch Mölltaler Almkäse Selektion, Austria (94)
- =6. Michel, Germany (94)
- 8. Holland Delta, 1 Year Old, the Netherlands (93)
- 9. Old Amsterdam Goat, the Netherlands (91)
- 10. Parmigiano Reggiano 30-39 Months, Italy (90)
For more information, and to see which other cheeses occupied the top of the list, check out the official website.