It has been a big week for shocking upsets in major competitions. For the first time in the history of the NCAA’s March Madness tournament, a 16th seed beat a No. 1 seed when UMBC beat University of Virginia, and now Little Caesars has to follow-through on a promise to give everyone free pizzas. Now, in a much bigger surprise for everyone in France, Canada just claimed the prize for making the world’s best Camembert.
Camembert originated in Normandy, but according to The Local, at the 2018 World Championship Cheese Contest in Madison, Wisconsin, the top prize in the Camembert category went to a cheese called L’Extra, which is produced in Saint-Hyacinthe, Quebec, not far from Montreal. The top Camembert from France was Isigny Sainte-Mère, from Normandy, which was the top Camembert in 2010. But this year that cheese only came in 12th in the competition.
“How can it be?” asked the French newspaper Ouest-France.
A French cheese did win the top overall prize at the competition. France’s Esquirrou cheese from the French Pyrenees mountains was named the best cheese in the world this year. But Canada’s Camembert win was such a surprise in France that it has stolen much of the Esquirrou’s thunder.
Agropur, the co-op that makes L’Extra, said it was pleased that its cheese had been picked as the champion in its category, and that “the creamy texture and hazelnut-and-mushroom flavour of our Camembert delighted the refined taste buds of a distinguished panel of internationally known judges.” Not gloating too much after beating France in an international Camembert competition is just one of the reasons we should all be taking etiquette lessons from Canada.