Discover the variety of  Northern Michigan’s cheese in these outstanding cheese shops, from Traverse City to Petoskey to Boyne City. Consider this your sampler.

Folgarelli’s Market

Perfumed with olive barrels, arancini and air-cured salumi, Folgarelli’s is Traverse City’s Old World foodie emporium. En route to the cheese counter you’ll weave among bulk bins of polenta and triple zero flour, shelves filled with six incarnations of San Marzano tomatoes, paper-wrapped bundles of housemade fettucine and case stacks of Chianti to wash it down. Mother and son proprietors Donna Folgarelli and Darric Neuman dispense wine and food wisdoms, while patrons queue before the bank of deli cases stuffed with wheels of aged Parmigiano Reggiano or bricks of creamy Taleggio alongside pâtés and logs of marbled mortadella. Darric curates the cheese selection, usually offering close to 100 selections year round, ranging from seasonal Goudas to truffle-laced pecorinos and rich triple cream Bries. Behind the cheese, a shiny stainless steel slicer thrums nearly nonstop during the busy lunch hour, shaving pastrami, corned beef and capicola to be piled high on airy ciabatta loaves or grilled between thick-cut slices of rye bread. 424 W Front St., Traverse City, 231.941.7651

Leelanau Cheese Company

Swiss-trained cheese gurus John and Ann Hoyt craft wheels of sublime, award-winning raclette in their creamery at Black Star Farms. Try their fromage blanc and herbed cheese spread as well. 3324 S West-Bay Shore Dr. (M22), Suttons Bay, 231.271.2600

Burritt’s Fresh Market

Burritt’s has a creative cheese case loaded with domestic and international selections to complement their expansive wine cellar. Check out the aged goudas, fresh goat cheeses and English stilton. 509 West Front Street, Traverse City 231.946.3300


On any given day you’ll find bell-shaped chevrot from the Loire Valley, pungent Spanish sheep’s milk blues like Monte Enebro or creamy crocks of Saint Marcellin. Check out Chef Suzanne’s proprietary Delices de l’Esperance. 12853 U.S. 31 North, Charlevoix 231.237.9300

Lake Street Market

In Boyne City’s hip and revitalized SOBO district, fromage-ophiles can get their flavor fix cut from artisan wheels of aged Manchego or farmhouse cheddar. Pick up some oil-cured olives and marcona almonds to go with. 127 Water Street, Boyne City 231.582.2151

Symons General Store

Petoskey’s historic gourmet emporium entices with nutty Alpine offerings like Hoch Ybrig, artisan Roquefort and semi-soft sheep’s milk cheeses from the Pyrénées. Fresh bread and couture crackers abound. 401 East Lake Street, Petoskey 231.347.2438

This article is also featured in the April 2013 issue of Traverse, Northern Michigan’s Magazine. Get your copy today!