Yomitan cheese using raw Okinawan milk wins silver in Japan Cheese Award

Yomitan cheese using raw Okinawan milk wins silver in Japan Cheese Award

Pamela Ann who won silver and bronze during the Japan Cheese Award, taken at Nagahama, Yomitan Village.


November 1, 2018 Ryukyu Shimpo


On October 20 during the Japan Cheese Award held in Tokyo, the “Marinated Yomitan tyrí” cheese sold at Greek restaurant Little GREEK Kitchen in Nagahama, Yomitan Village won silver for the Fresh Variety category.

A different cheese from the same restaurant, “Yomitan tyrí” also won bronze in the Fresh Plain category. R

estaurant owner Pamela Ann smiled as she said, “Winning the awards makes me happy. I’m grateful.”


The Japan Cheese Award has been hosted every two years since starting in 2014.

Their purpose is to improve the quality of natural cheeses produced in Japan.

During this year’s competition, there were 233 entries from 78 shops from around the country.

A total of about 70 judges made up of producers and others participated.

During the first competition, a cheese from Hagoromo Farm in Okinawa won bronze.


Pamela, born in the U.S. and who had been working as a manicurist at the time, became interested in everything Greek after working for her Greek boss.

In 2016, she and her friend who lives in Okinawa established a Greek restaurant in Yomitan Village.


While feta cheese made with raw milk from sheep or goat is the norm in Greece, Pamela uses raw milk from cows reared at the Oyadomari Farm in Nanjo City to recreate the unique flavor of Greek cheese.

The “Marinated Yomitan tyrí” that won silver uses the “Yomitan tyrí” that won bronze and soaks it in Okinawan and/or Greek herbs, spices, and oils.


The word “tyrí” means cheese in Greek.

Pamela who has also lived in Greece for six years said, “Originally, I began making cheese for the children.

I also want the Okinawan people to appreciate the goodness of Greek things.”


Pamela is currently enrolled at a Greek university and does research on dairy products via video calls.

She voiced her interest in developing Camembert cheese and said, “Next time, I’d like to win gold. Good cheese can be made with Okinawan milk.”


(English translation by T&CT and Chelsea Ashimine)


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