Fans of Kentucky's other culinary specialty — beer cheese — will be all over Winchester on Saturday. The 10th annual Beer Cheese Festival starts at 10 a.m. and goes until 5 p.m. (or all the cheese is gone.)
The festival features dozens of amateur and professional beer cheese makers competing for the title of best beer cheese.
About 30,000 people attend the annual event, which stretches along Main Street, otherwise known as Beer Cheese Boulevard. You can buy a wristband for $5 and sample all you like, then vote for your favorites.
Professional competitors this year will include Big Poppies Beer Cheese, Blue Isle Home-style Restaurant and Bar, Dad's Favorites Cheese Spreads, F.X. Hunt Cheese on Tap, Hall's The Original Snappy Beer Cheese, Full Circle Market, River Rat Beer Cheese, Woody's Sports Bar & Grill and Kentucky Beer Cheese (last year's first place winner.)
Wristbands will be available at the festival and at Rock the Block, a live music event, from 7 to 9 p.m. on Friday at the Clark County Courthouse.
There also will be live music, kids activities, a beer garden and other food for purchase as well as crafts and local produce for sale. Garin Pirnia, who wrote the definitive (only?) history and recipe book for the spicy spread, will be on hand to sign "The Beer Cheese Book."
Beer cheese, which Kentuckians claim to have invented (this is disputed by Wisconsin, just for the record), has so many fans there is now an official Beer Cheese Trail, which includes the festival, of course. Hard core fans can eat at eight restaurants, keep track on their official Beer Cheese Trail Log, turn it in and get a free T-shirt. Which you might to get in a slightly larger size after eating all that beer cheese.