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Free cheese tasting Monday

Giles Schnierle of the Great American Cheese Collection (photo ©2010 by Leah A. Zeldes).

Giles Schnierle of the Great American Cheese Collection (photo by Leah A. Zeldes).

Taste a selection of exceptional artisan American cheeses from 7 to 9 p.m. Monday, Dec. 3, at Lux Bar on the Gold Coast in a free pop-up Cheese Salon from The Great American Cheese Collection.

The event features John Loomis, owner of Zingermann’s Creamery in Ann Arbor, Mich., presenting bloomy rind cow and goat milk cheeses and aged Cheshire, and Master Cheese Maker Fons Smits from Ludwig Creamery in Fithian, Ill., who’ll showcase several cheeses. Visitors can also taste cheeses from Goldin Artisan Goat Cheese, Westfield Farms, Brazos Valley and Nicasio Valley Cheeses.

Richard Faltz, founder and wine maker at Fox Valley Winery, will pair several of his wines with the Midwestern artisan cheeses. Also on hand will be Coleen Graham, one of only two certified Master Fromagers in the country; A’isha Bauer from eSutras, a flavor chemist who’ll be offering tastes of her highly concentrated culinary herb and spice oils; and Giles Schnierle, owner of Great American Cheese.

Lux Bar Chef Michael McDonald will prepare appetizers featuring a few of the cheeses, and the bar will offer beverages at special prices.

The tasting is free but reservations are required at leslie@greatamericancheese.com.