Attendees of this past weekend’s Cheese Fest in Brighton, England were left wondering, "where’s the cheese?" The festival infuriated curd lovers, who paid 6 British pounds (about USD$8) for entry, with a definitive lack of cheese.
Prior to the festival, Cheese Fest organizers not only promised “the best mac and cheese in the world,” but also nachos, fondue, raclette, fried halloumi, and mozzarella sticks. What they found instead, besides chips and pizza, were queues with wait times of 80 minutes and stalls with no cheese left at all. Apparently festival goers encountered a mere 18 food stalls, and a generous 15 loos.
So, naturally, many turned to Twitter. One angry attendee compared the experience to that of an “overcrowded food court.” Others aired their grievances with clever, punny vitriol. @aislingbrock remarked that the event was “a very stinky cheese fest,” while @Lewis_Hollis just couldn’t bear it, saying, “I camembert it.” @Mrs_Helfy commented that the entire situation was “UnBRIElievably disappointing.”
Event organizers duly noted the “constructive criticism.” They apologized and explained that “the demand for the cheese on offer wasn’t anticipated,” which only angered the commenters further. Twitter members correctly pointed out that the festival was a cheese fest, after all. Clearly, those in charge should have anticipated that attendees did, in fact, expect cheese.
It's an unfortunate incident, not only for the future of Cheese Fest, but because of the coincidental double meaning of the word. The verb (rather than the noun) form of cheese can mean to “confuse, distort, exaggerate, falsify, overstate.” In that case, the festival's founders were right on the mark, much to their chagrin.
Either way, “If there’s one way to anger the British public it’s to promise cheese and not deliver, ” attendee Sophie Manning tweeted.
Hey, British or not, we'd be pretty cheesed off, too.
This story originally appeared on Foodandwine.com.