Specialty Food Magazine

Winter 2020

Specialty Food Magazine is the leading publication for retailers, manufacturers and foodservice professionals in the specialty food trade. It provides news, trends and business-building insights that help readers keep their businesses competitive.

Issue link: https://www.e-digitaleditions.com/i/1194330

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Page 40 of 115

38 SPECIALTY FOOD SPECIALTYFOOD.COM CHEESE FOCUS buttery, and delightfully aromatic. La Via Lattea, a 22-year-old creamery in the Piedmont region, now produces more than 100 styles of goat cheese of astonishing novelty— among them, the soft-ripened coffee-crusted Insonne (translation: sleepless); the delightful Camilla, a semi-firm raw goat toma coated in dried chamomile; and the hugely aromatic Ol Sciur, a moist, fruity raw-milk blue coated with crushed berries and rose petals. From Quattro Portoni, the Lombardy producer that pioneered buffalo-milk cheese production in northern Italy, keep an eye out for Liteggio di Bufala. The creamery's first raw-milk cheese, it's a 4-pound wheel with a natural rind matured for about three months. Jonathan McDowell, a sales rep for the Aniata Cheese Company, is enthusiastic about Ilatia Burrata di Bufala from Campania. Most water-buffalo milk goes to mozzarella production, so burrata made with this extra-rich milk is harder to find. Savvy retailers will arm their staff with suggestions for how to use burrata in winter: sliced on polenta; on an antipasto platter with sun-dried tomatoes, olives, and preserved eggplant; or on bruschetta with sautéed rapini. Using an extract from the flower of a thistle (Cynara cardunculus) to coagulate milk for cheese is a traditional practice in parts of Spain and Portugal. At Fiandino, a family-run creamery in "He's the ultimate mad-scientist experimenter," says Kirtz. Moro's more recent fantasies include the captivating Fior d'Arancio, a cow's-milk blue wheel pierced and steeped in sweet Fior d'Arancio wine, with candied orange on top for good measure. "It's like blue-cheese candy," says Kirtz. "Some people are turned off by blue cheese, but the wine mellows all that and you get the sweeter side of blue." Continuing on the steeping theme, Moro makes a range of so-called "drunken" cheeses soaked in regional wines, including Ubriaco del Piave, which spends 40 hours in a red-wine blend; Ubriaco al Prosecco; and a new Ubriaco steeped in Ribolla Gialla, a local white wine, and aged for 10 months. "They do taste distinct," says Kirtz. "The Ubriaco al Prosecco smells and tastes like prosecco. It has that brightness to it." Next up from Moro: a line of cocktail-themed cheeses. Forever Cheese is expecting its first shipment of Negroni Blue, blue-veined wheels inspired by the popular aperitivo and presumably steeped in gin, Campari, and vermouth. "People love the idea," says Kirtz, who presented it at the 2019 Summer Fancy Food Show. "It's playful." Kevin Corcoran, a West Coast sales rep for importer/distributor Food Matters Again, admires the distinctive cheeses emerging from Romagna Terre. This producer in Italy's Romagna region introduced the juniper-scented Pecorino Ginepro years ago and has since built on that success with Pecorino Camomilla (coated in dried chamomile), Pecorino Gelsomino (coated with jasmine flowers) and Pecorino Canapa (coated in dried hemp). These are head-turning cheeses: original, beautiful,

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