Transport Yourself to Switzerland in Spring

Spring is a beautiful time in Switzerland. Throughout the cheesemaking region, where Emmi cheeses are crafted and aged, you’ll find lush pastures and forests dotted with wildflowers surrounding the snowcapped mountains.

While travel plans are on hold for now, you can at least transport yourself to these picturesque locales for your next video call with our new collection of backgrounds. Download the images below to bring a little beauty and fun to your calls, and share your love of Swiss cheese!

It all starts on the farm, and these beautiful cows are always ready to hop on a call. (Download)
Who wouldn’t want an office with this view? (Download)
Dialing in from the castle today. That’s the Castle of Gruyères, an iconic medieval landmark in the cheesemaking region of Switzerland. (Download)
Did you know there are 120,000 wheels of cheese stored in the legendary KALTBACH cave in Switzerland’s Alpine Valley? Be a master affineur for the day with this striking background. (Download)
Virtually transport yourself to a quaint outdoor café filled with wildflowers. (Download)

And if you’re able, please consider supporting your favorite local restaurants through gift card purchases, online ordering or takeout. Here is a great roundup of more ways you can help.
Join your next virtual happy hour from this cheese lover’s dream picnic spread, no prep work required. (Download)
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Experience the Emmi Tradition

At Emmi USA, we know that where your food comes from matters, because it’s important to us, too. That’s why we’re committed to telling you a deeper story about where our traditional cheeses from Switzerland come from.

Each new label on our traditional Le Gruyère, Emmentaler, Tête de Moine, and Appenzeller cheeses depicts icons that represent the region the cheese is made in Switzerland. These symbols are inspired by the ancient Swiss folk art of Scherenschnitte, which translates to “scissor cut”, the traditional art of Swiss paper cutting.

This folk art emerged in Switzerland in the 1800s and remains a tradition today, perhaps because its symbols – cows, mountains, and fir trees – fit the art form perfectly.

The inspiration of Scherenschnitte also symbolizes the art, craft, and skills that are part of our cheesemaking culture here at Emmi.

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2020 Year of Cheese Giveaway

Win a year’s worth of Emmi cheese!

Happy National Cheese Lover’s Day! The big day is Monday, January 20, and we’re celebrating all week by giving away a YEAR’S WORTH of Emmi cheese to one lucky fan. Enter below for a chance to win below and don’t forget to share the cheese love this week!

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Winner selection & prize details: 
The winner will be chosen on Monday, January 27 and announced on Facebook and Instagram. Winner will receive 1 shipment of Emmi cheese (approximately 8-9 pounds each) every 3 months for 1 year (totaling 4 shipments of 35 pounds total cheese). The package will contain a variety of cheese decided upon by Emmi USA.

What you need to know:
Entrants must be U.S. residents age 18 or older.
Entrants must enter through the widget on the webpage.
One random entry will be chosen as the winner.
Entry period ends Monday, January 27 at 9:00 am CST.

This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook. You are providing your information to Emmi USA and not to Facebook.

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Emmi Cheese Partners with World-Renowned Chef, Elizabeth Falkner, for National Pop-Up Pizza Tour

NEW YORK, December 3, 2019 – Emmi, the nation’s largest importer of specialty cheese from Switzerland, is partnering with Chef Elizabeth Falkner for the first-ever Swiss Cheese Pizza Tour. The duo will travel the United States to bring true Swiss cheese flavors to an American audience through pizza pop-ups at chef-owned restaurants across the country. 

The evening pop-up events will feature Chef Falkner as a guest chef, menuing unique pizzas made with Emmi cheeses. Guests can also snack on custom cheeseboards to sample a variety of Emmi cheeses including Le Gruyère AOP, Emmentaler, and their line of Kaltbach cave-aged cheeses. Each event will be customized to each city, including chef-against-chef pizza competitions and more. 

“I love playing with various ingredients and flavors, especially when I am able to be creative in a space with some of my favorite chefs and pizzerias,” says Chef Elizabeth Falkner. “Bringing Emmi Swiss cheeses along for the tour is going to be an exciting experience.”

The tour will make several stops, including: 

More 2020 locations will be confirmed soon. For more information about the Emmi Swiss Cheese Pizza Tour, visit

Media Contact: 
Abby Despins

About Emmi USA
Emmi USA brings artisan cave-aged cheese, ready-to-serve fondues, and traditional and exclusive cheeses from Switzerland to the United States. Steeped in custom and culture, our expert cheesemakers use centuries-old methods to create only the finest specialties, including Kaltbach cave-aged Le Gruyère AOP, an epic cheese with an exceptionally intense flavor, stemming from extensive curing in our natural sandstone cave near Lucerne, Switzerland. Learn more at

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The Beauty of Cheese and Dessert, An Interview with Caroline Schiff

Caroline Schiff is a Pastry Chef in Brooklyn, New York. The following is transcribed from an interview with Caroline.

Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and your current projects?

Yes, my name is Caroline Schiff and I am a pastry chef in Brooklyn, New York. And, I am going to be the pastry chef at Gage & Tollner which is reopening shortly in Brooklyn. Gage & Tollner was a legendary, famous chophouse in downtown Brooklyn. It opened in 1890s and it closed in 2003. It has this incredible legacy, and it was the place to go for more than 100 years. So many people of influence came through the doors and kitchens. Edna Lewis was the chef there at one point, which is an absolutely incredible thing. It has a landmarked interior, which is rare and really, really special. It’s probably the most unique project I could be working on as a chef, and the most exciting. It’s something that feels really creatively inspiring to be given something that has so much history and so many stories.

How did you get your start as a chef?

I’ve been baking forever, since I was a little girl. I have always loved pastry and being in a kitchen. It’s always been my greatest passion. After college I started working in kitchens. My first job was with Sohui Kim at the Good Fork who is the chef and one of the owners at Gage & Tollner – that was almost twelve years ago. It’s amazing to come full circle with someone who mentored you in the beginning. Pastry was the natural and instinctual thing for me and it’s, I feel very lucky I get to do the thing I love for a living.

You’ve traveled extensively, did this play into your love of cheese?

I’ve been to Switzerland, I lived in France for a year, in the Alps. I spent a lot of time in Italy, and if there’s anything I love anything as much as pastry, it’s probably cheese. When I was right out of college and interning at the restaurant, I also worked as a cheesemonger. Cheese is the best thing, it’s the best food. When I lived in France, I lived really close to the Swiss border. I had access to all of these incredible cheeses and local things, the selection was totally mind-blowing. I got totally into it and was spoiled and addicted. People close to me know that I have a cheese plate for dinner probably three times a week.

Recently, you’ve crafted a new recipe using Emmi Le Gruyère – tell us about that.

Yes! A little bit about Gruyère – it’s an Alpine cheese, it’s really iconic. It is Switzerland’s national treasure. It’s really buttery, it’s really nutty. It’s firm, but it’s really fatty, and it’s creamy once it melts. Because of that nuttiness, I think it can walk the line with sweet and savory. So, there’s certain applications that work so beautifully with it – on the sweeter side, apples, nuts and honey. On the savory, caramelized onions, bread and all of those delicious things. I wanted to with this recipe show how versatile it is and how it is a beautiful partner for all of these different kinds of ingredients. I made a Gruyère Apple Tart– there’s sage. The crust is a blend of buckwheat and whole wheat, and I did that because there’s a lot of flavor in buckwheat, it has a great earthiness to it, it is a little more interesting than white flower. Whole wheat also has more going on and I love the rustic quality that brings. It all tied together really beautifully, there’s some white wine in there because, you know, why not. I think the flavor combinations work together so well, and it’s pretty easy to put together. You don’t have to be a pastry chef to do it.

How do you feel cheese and sweets can play together?

I think with cheese we sometimes feel a little stuck with it, like it’s a cheeseboard, it’s a snack, and then you present it with all of these savory items that are delicious, but then that’s it. I think with the aged Swiss cheeses and the Alpine-style cheeses, Gouda and especially the Kaltbach varieties, there’s so much nuttiness, complexity and butterniness that they can go so well with tart fruit, nuts and honey. Things that are natural pairings that complement each other; I also love certain chocolates with cheeses. The Kaltbach Gouda has almost a butterscotch flavor and as a dessert with some dark chocolate, it’s pretty knockout; it’s pretty outrageous. I think people can think outside the box with cheese. Let’s not relegate it to a savory ingredient or as a snack or cheeseboard.

I think in terms of using cheese in pastry and in dessert, taste it! Just try to figure out what notes you are getting, are you getting nuts, caramel, butterscotch, even fruity, and what would you want to eat that with? Try it! It might be really good – the stakes are really low. The worst that happens is that you don’t like it. Cheese is like wine. There are so many flavors. It may start one way on your palate and finish in a completely different way depending on its age. Play around with it and have some fun.

Caroline’s Instagram

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DIY Polenta Party with Emmi Fondü

Emmi signature ready-to-serve Fondü is now creamier than ever. It heats up in minutes and is wonderful for dipping all sorts of accompaniments. Fondü is also one of our favorite secret weapons in the kitchen. Ready in minutes, it’s the low-key star of this DIY polenta party for a crowd with quick sautéed greens, roasted mushrooms and beets, and an oven polenta recipe so easy you’ll never make it any other way. As you may have guessed, it all gets topped with creamy, cheesy Fondü.

The best part of this DIY polenta bar is how quickly it all comes together to feed a crowd. The polenta method is key to keeping your party prep stress free. We’re big fans of the set-it-and-forget-it ease of baked polenta. No need for constant stirring and the texture is just right. We’re honestly not sure why we ever made polenta any other way.

You’ll need a casserole dish or Dutch oven (should hold at least 8 cups). In your baking dish, combine 4 cups water with 1 cup coarse ground cornmeal and a big pinch of salt. Bake at 350 degrees F for 1 hour, stirring in a couple tablespoons of butter or olive oil in the last 10-15 minutes of cooking. That’s it! Perfect polenta is served.

The toppings for this laid back party should be equally unfussy. We opted for quick sautéed greens (with lots of garlic), and roasted mushrooms and golden beets. Practically any roasted vegetable would be fantastic. A slow-cooked meat – chicken, beef or pork – would make an excellent addition, as well.

Emmi Fondü serves as a decadent cheese sauce with party-worthy flavor appeal. Heat in a saucepan, stirring frequently, until smooth. Reduce heat to the lowest setting to keep warm, stirring often. For this casual polenta party, we’re happy to let everyone serve themselves in the kitchen, keeping everything warm on the stove. If you’re setting up a buffet elsewhere, a fondue pot will come in handy.

The best part is that this casually elegant spread requires very little prep, letting you spend as much quality time as possible with your guests. Cheers to that!

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Incorporating Emmi Cheese Into Holiday Treats

When the holidays roll around, I’m always excited for all the extra baking. The most exciting part for me is to be able to share special recipes with family and friends — I love to indulge with truly decadent recipes at this time of year. I’m always looking to wow with a few special dishes: a holiday breakfast, a decadent dessert that’s full of surprises, and of course — something delicious to gift to others. This year, I turned to Emmi cheeses for all three of these needs.

First up, a breakfast dish. Since I spend most of the year away from my immediate family, I love to prepare a leisurely breakfast for them when I visit for the holidays. This year, I opted for a totally over-the-top stuffed French toast: thick layers of brioche stuffed with sautéed spiced pears and thick slices of one of my favorite cheeses of all time: gooey, melty Raclette. After stuffing the slices of bread to the brim with filling, I dip them in a classic custard, sweetened with maple syrup, and cook them until golden brown on a hot griddle. You can hold them in a 300 degree oven, tented with foil, to keep them warm if you’re cooking for a crowd. The finished dish is the perfect combination of sweet and savory, fruity and creamy, rich and filling. It’s a perfect and impressive way to start off a holiday morning!

While I’m on the subject of how much I love Raclette, let’s talk about all the amazing things it can do. It’s so buttery and creamy, it can actually almost serve as a substitute for them in some recipes, like caramel sauce. Yes, you heard me right — you can melt Raclette into a golden caramel sauce and it adds an incredible depth of flavor: a slight nuttiness, and a deeply delicious taste I’ve become obsessed with! It’s good on everything from ice cream to cakes, but I especially love it drizzled over fruity pastries, such as my Citrus Skillet Danish. Start by par-baking a layer of puff pastry in a cast iron skillet. Then, a layer of delicious almond cream is spread on top, and finally an assortment of sliced citrus — I used mandarin oranges, oranges, and grapefruit — but really any citrus will work beautifully! The finished pastry has a crisp crust, a creamy filling, and bright citrus flavors, all of which are amplified with a drizzle of the gooey cheese caramel. A wonderful, surprising dessert to bring to any holiday soirée.

But most of the baking I’ll do this holiday season is meant for gifting, and this year I wanted to do a twist on a classic. I took my favorite Panettone recipe — traditionally a sweet holiday bread from Italy, loaded with inclusions like dried fruit, chocolate, and nuts — and made it savory instead. The soft, buttery dough is studded with chunks of dried sausage, toasty pecans, chewy dried apples, and chunks of Kaltbach Gruyére. The result is a beautiful loaf worthy of gifting, but the smell it infuses your kitchen with while it’s baked is like a bonus gift for the baker!

No matter what your holiday baking needs are this year, be they sweet or savory (or a combo of both!), there are so many fun and creative ways to incorporate one of my favorite ingredients of all time: cheese! I especially love the versatility, flavor, and meltability of the flavorful Alpine cheeses from Emmi, and can’t wait to whip up these recipes for my hungry family this season.

Interested in making some of these delicious holiday treats? See below for recipes.

Skillet Citrus Almond Danish with Gooey Raclette Caramel

Savory Cheese and Sausage Panettone

Pear and Raclette Stuffed French Toast

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Holiday Pairings with Kaltbach Le Gruyère AOP

Good things do indeed come to those who wait. After at least one year aging under the watchful café of the Kaltbach Master Affineur in the legendary caves, Kaltbach Le Gruyère AOP makes its way onto tables around the world. With its flavors of dried stone fruit, spice, black tea and hazelnuts, it’s the perfect cheese to feature on a holiday cheese board.

Kaltbach Le Gruyère AOP lends itself beautifully to both sweet and savory pairings, as well as a festive holiday punch (read on for the recipe).

It’s hard to go wrong sweet pairings to accentuate this versatile cheese that delights a wide range of palates. Choose a selection of accompaniments that add color as well as complementary flavors to your cheese board. For the holidays, we reach for deeply colored black grapes, fresh persimmons whenever they’re available, dried figs and a beautifully made jam. Cherry jam is a wonderful complement to the cheese, and if golden plum jam is available in your market, it makes for an extra special holiday treat. Finish your sweet pairings with a cookie – it is the holidays, after all! Ginger snaps, almond cookies or cranberry biscotti are all great choices.

On the savory side, there are many great options, as well. Hearty, rustic bread is a must, as are briny, buttery olives. Charcuterie is another wonderful pair with many possibilities. For our holiday board, we chose double smoked Canadian bacon (ham works wonderfully, too) and peppery soppressata.

It wouldn’t be the holidays without a cup of cheer, so don’t forget to include a festive beverage pairing or two. If you’re serving wine, choose a Cabernet Franc, red or white Burgundy, Grenache or Syrah to complement the Kaltbach Le Gruyère AOP cheese. Single malt Scotch also highlights the flavors of the cheese quite nicely. If a holiday punch is more your style, we have just the recipe to accentuate your beautiful cheese board, made with sparkling pear cider, ginger kombucha, port wine and club soda. Get the recipe below.

For something non-alcoholic, ginger kombucha and non-alcoholic pear cider are both great options. Whatever your beverage of choice, raise a glass to friends, family and good food, and have a wonderful holiday season!

Ginger Pear & Port Punch

1 bottle (750 ml) ruby port wine
1 bottle (16 ounces) ginger kombucha
1 bottle (750 ml) pear cider
1 pear, sliced
1 liter club soda
1 cup frozen cranberries (optional)

In punch bowl, combine port wine, kombucha and pear cider; mix. Top with ice and club soda to taste. Garnish with sliced pears and frozen cranberries.

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Five Tips for an Unforgettable Dinner Party

It will come as no surprise that our dinner parties are usually centered around cheese. Whether we’re warming up pots of Fondü for dipping, firing up the Raclette grill or setting out bountiful cheese boards for nibbling, the cheese is always center stage. That’s enough to ensure plenty of prompt “yes” RSVPs, but once the party arrives, we want to make it an extra special experience for our guests. A few small touches help keep good energy and leave a lasting impression long after the last piece of cheese has been devoured.

1. Change Your Perspective
As long as the weather possibly allows, we’re throwing parties al fresco — bundling up in sweaters and blankets, and cozying up by the fire. Whether you’re indoors or out, you can create a totally new environment simply by changing your table height. And no, we don’t mean making permanent changes to your furniture. You can create a custom low “table” with a piece of wood or tabletop surface, and cinder blocks. Layer a few tablecloths or throws over top for a more boho feel (or to hide a less-than-charming surface). For seating, think pillows and cushions. Get creative and cozy!

2. Stretch Your Flowers
A couple pots of mums are easy to find and inexpensive throughout the fall season. Snip off a few bunches to fill small jars and tabletop vases. Place a flower on each place setting. Wrap up small bundles with parchment paper, and secure with twine for sweet little takeaway bouquets. Use whatever is leftover to fill your prettiest pots around the table.

3. Go Monotone
Pick a neutral color palette for your table to ensure the food and florals really pop. Here, we’ve chosen warm tones of brown and gold to complement the dark wood table.

4. Raid the Olive Bar
A plethora of cheese-friendly accompaniments can be found on the olive bar at nearly every grocery store these days. Take full advantage to create bountiful cheese boards with minimal effort. Be sure to look for items in a variety of colors to add visual interest.

5. Get Everyone Involved
A dinner party centered around cheese is enough to make your guests giddy with excitement, but keep them involved throughout the night. A wheel of Tête de Moine adds extra excitement to the table. We love watching guests’ faces light up as they spin the girolle, a tool that curls the cheese into petal-shaped pieces. With other cheeses, keep large wedges on-hand for cutting throughout the night, so guests can see and feel the rinds as they slice off a piece. Of course, fondue and Raclette are wonderfully interactive as well, and our Emmi Fondü is easy to heat and serve.


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The Fermentation Process

At the Fermentation Festival in Austin, Texas, we showcased our lineup of Kaltbach cheeses and talked about how important fermentation is in the cheesemaking process, along with the influence of the Kaltbach Cave on our cheese…

First – a little about fermentation when it comes to cheese.

Fermentation is the metabolic process that consumes sugar in the absence of oxygen, and the transformation of these chemical components by microbes produces energy. So – fermentation eats sugar and releases energy. In the case of cheese, fermentation means eating lactose (the sugar in milk) and producing acid.

When we think about cheese, the first step in the fermentation process happens when the milk is inoculated with lactic acid bacteria, our primary microflora, and rennet in a vat. The lactic bacteria converts the sugar (or lactose) in milk to lactic acid. The lactic acid and rennet cause the milk to curdle, which separates the curds (made of milk solids, fats and proteins) and whey (which is mostly water).

The curds soak until the lactic acid bacteria create a concentration that is just right, then the whey is drained off. The curds are then pressed, salted and mixed with different types of secondary microflora, and is then sent for aging. The cheese ripens for a designated amount of time to improve taste and consistency. During this time, the enzymes and bacteria continue to modify proteins, fats and sugars in the cheese. Fun fact: particular bacteria fermenting remaining lactose in the cheese can produce carbon dioxide, which is how we can end up with holes in traditional Swiss, or Emmentaler cheese.

When it comes to our Kaltbach Cave-Aged Le Gruyere. As you can probably tell from the name, this cheese is aged in a cave. More specifically, our line of Kaltbach cheeses are aged in the 22-million-year old Kaltbach Cave in Switzerland. Kaltbach Le Gruyere is aged in the cave for a year, brushed with a brine (water and salt) solution every 7-10 days. The cave, which has a constant temperature (50-53 degrees F) and humidity (96%), and has a huge impact on the cheese aged within it.

While aging, bacteria ferments the remaining lactose, which metabolize and create certain flavors such as fruity, nutty and sweet. The Kaltbach cheeses are entirely unique, as the microflora in the cave create additional metabolic processes that occur within the cheese that create one-of-a-kind flavors. The Kaltbach cave effects the aroma, dark rind color, smoothness, flavor and creamy texture seen with these cheeses that can’t be replicated anywhere else in the world.

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