During the awards ceremony of the Dutch National Cheese Judging Competition on October 12, Rosanne Sluijs of CONO Kaasmakers was awarded the Golden Cheese Drill. She may call herself the best cheese connoisseur of the Netherlands with 238 points.
Rosanne took over the Golden Cheese Drill from her colleague Sjoerd Hiemstra, who won it in 2022.
That year, Rosanne already received an honorable mention as best newcomer. That she has now won the Golden Cheese Drill feels unreal: "When the winner was announced, I thought 'is this even about me?' I was very secretly hoping for bronze, but winning the Golden Cheese Drill I really never expected."
Henk Mul, former cheese master at CONO was awarded the bronze within the industry category. This is his second bronze medal.
In addition to several medals, there are now three gold cheese drills in CONO's trophy cabinet. "I am super proud of this," said General Manager Jerry Griep. "In 2022, Rosanne competed in the NNKC for the first time. I take my hat off to her for her achievement among all the experienced peers. That the drill passes to the next generation this year just proves that cheese and our craft is alive and well!"
On October 2 and 3, 2023, some 700 cheese professionals looked, smelled, felt and tasted a specially selected assortment of Dutch cheese. The winner of the Golden Cheese Drill is the one who was able to best distinguish the variety, maturation stage, taste and quality.
Rosanne is the second woman since 1960 to receive this prestigious award. As winner of the Golden Cheese Drill, she will be delegated as a judge to international cheese competitions around the world, including the World Championship Cheese Contest in Wisconsin.