Let’s face it, you can get somewhat “interested” in a pecorino. Yes, it is great on your pasta and we’ve all tasted it before. You shave it, grate it, sprinkle it and spread it on your favourite dish. You may even put it on a salad if you dare. Yeah, it’s a tad dull now. But then this happens; Pecorino Toscano.
In the northern reaches of Lombardy, Italy lies a valley calledValsassina. This North-South running valley starts high in thesnow capped mountains and extends down to empty it’s meltedsnow into the famous Lake Como. Beneath these snow cappedmountains lie several deep and important caves that one manrecognised as the ideal place to mature cheese.
Ah, la dolce vita – a phrase that could only come from Italy and sums up in three little words the good life, the reverence of sheer pleasure and of indulgence. Certainly the Italians know better than most how to find the wonder and beauty in the simplest of things, and no more so than in their food and wine.
Just imagine that you are a lonely goatherder living in a small stone farm in the middle of these foothills. It’s cold, it’s dark, you head out at the crack of dawn to tend your animals, with nothing more than the thought of a delicious piece of bread and cheese at the end of your exhausting day to keep you warm.
How many cheeses can you name that are aged in (and named after) caves? Well now you can make that 1. And let’s be honest, if cavemen had had a few of these back at the pad, they wouldn’t have needed to club anyone over the head to lure them home…
If you are fantatical about cheese then this will be a highlight for you. Coming from Valsassina in North Western Italy, this Taleggio is a remarkable example of fresh raw ingredients and ancient maturing processes. This cheese is matured in caves that are kept at a constant 5-6deg due to the melting snow above seeping down into the deep cracks. This melted snow also helps with the humidity to ensure the cheese is spectacular! The Mauri family have created a wonder.
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