The Sonoma Valley Cheese Conference takes place Sunday, Feb. 23, through Friday, Feb. 28, at various locations
in Sonoma. The public is invited to
the cheese tasting on Sunday,
Feb. 23 at Ramekins Culinary Center. 450 W. Spain St., Sonoma. $55. 1pm. 707.935.7960.
The Giacomini Dairy, in the hills above Tomales Bay, has been in operation since 1959. Robert Giacomini is a dairyman with a herd of Holsteins, but it was getting harder to support the business by just producing milk. He had a dream of making cheese, and eventually convinced his four daughters to return to the fold to help get the operation off the ground. In 2000, they launched the Point Reyes Farmstead Cheese Company and released the first blue cheese made in California, Point Reyes Original Blue.
The Giacominis will be at the Sonoma Valley Cheese Conference with their award-winning cheese. "We're as excited as ever and we can't wait," says company spokesperson Jill Giacomini Basch. In 2013, their newest addition, Bay Blue, won a gold SOFI (Specialty Outstanding Food Innovation) award—considered the Oscar of the food industry—as well as a Good Food Award and a third-place ribbon at the American Cheese Society Competition. Their toma, a semi-hard table cheese, won second place there in 2012. Point Reyes Farmstead will be participating on a panel called "Publicity Boot Camp."—Brooke Jackson