Three Cheesy Cheers for National Italian Cheese Month! Yes, we are all in, bringing you three incredible Italian Cheeses from a variety of styles. All three made from decades or even centuries of tradition. Choosing cheese this month was crazy since there are so many incredible options to choose from! With as many as 450 varieties of Italian Cheese there are enough tastes and textures to satisfy every palate. Romans were passionate about creating and sharing their cheese and were even responsible for introducing the art of cheesemaking to other European countries. Today, fine Italian Cheese is made following strict traditional methods, in specific regions, earning a Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) status, like our Gorgonzola Dolce.
A house favorite. This Gran Riserva Leonardi is a premium Gorgonzola cheese, the result of craftsmanship and a very carefully refined selection. The milk is collected from freely grazing dairy cows north of Novara in the hills to create a blue so creamy that it is best served with a spoon. Born from the passion and tenacity of three generations and a deep understanding of the ancient art of cheese, these features give life to this showstopper blue cheese with unique layers of flavor and a sweet toasted caramel finish. If you don’t like blue cheese or maybe gorgonzola, you MUST try this cheese before you turn away from it. If there was a cheese to open one’s mind to a blue marbled cheese, this is it! Oh, and did we mention… it is lactose free? Pure Bliss!!!
Piave is a deliciously nutty, pasteurized cow’s milk cheese from the Veneto in Northern Italy. It is often mistaken as a Parmigiano-Reggiano but it is creamier and has a full tropical nutty flavor, crystalline texture and bright, smooth buttery finish that makes it perfect to enjoy right from the wheel. It has an affinity for both red and white wine, so feel free to generously shave it over salads, pastas, toast, steak or anything you love to enjoy cheese on.
Meanoing “under ash", drived from the layer of ash that covers the cheese as it ages. It is a pale yellow, semi-soft cheese with black truffles added in the paste which, is then aged in ash. Spices like nutmeg, coriander, cinnamon, liquorice, cloves and fennel on the rind retain the aroma of the cheese but remarkably do not alter the beautiful earthy, mushroomy flavor of the paste. This cheese pairs amazing with Italian Barbera but don't shy away from pairing it with your favorite wine, we have found it to be extremely versatile with sauv blancs, dry rose's and most reds!
The rarest most coveted cheese in Italy, is Pule Cheese. Pule Cheese is a Serbian cheese made from 60% Balkan Donkey mild and 40% Goat’s milk. It is also the most expensive cheese due to the rarity of the Balkan Donkey’s fetching as much as $300 - $1000 per pound. Legend has it that Egyptian queen Cleopatra bathed in donkey’s milk in an attempt to preserve her beauty. So what does this cheese taste like? It is described as crumbly and soft with flavors similar to Spanish Manchego but with a deeper and richer flavor.
With Summer coming to an end and fresh corn only being available for a little while longer we found a great corn recipe that is incredibly decadent. Definitely a great way to say good bye to summer!