Specialty Food Magazine

MAY-JUN 2012

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.

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Page 28 of 103

CHEESE FOCUS judging by the number of retailers who cited him. Cusie is his creation, an aged mixed-milk wheel whose name is Piedmontese dialect for "whatever we have," reflecting the fact that the milk blend changes. Occelli wraps some wheels in tobacco leaves and coats oth- ers with malted barley and whiskey, then puts them away for 18 to 24 months. Despite their high price, these rare wheels are finding takers at DeLaurenti in Seattle, says store buyer Connie Bennett. Testun al Barolo Also from Occelli, the Testun al Barolo cheese has a strong follow- ing, says Oliver's Markets' cheesemonger Colette Hatch. Typically made with sheep's or goat's milk, but sometimes with a percentage of cow's milk too, Testun is among the hardest of Piedmont cheeses, a region better known for soft robiolas. (Testun means "hard head" in the local dialect.) Occelli sets some wheels aside for extended aging in Nebbiolo grape must, a practice that imbues the wheel with fruity aromas. Frumage Baladin and Terza Birra For the beer fans, there's Frumage Baladin, a beer-washed cow's milk cheese from Piedmont with malted barley in the curd. "We put a sign on it that says 'Beer Geek Alert!' and it flies," reports Hunter Fike, general manager at Di Bruno Bros. Made from raw milk coagulated with thistle flowers, the 2-pound wheels have a rustic natural rind, a creamy interior and a malty finish. Guffanti's Terza Birra ("One-Third Beer") also speaks to the booming contingent of craft-beer enthusiasts. Based on a Piedmont recipe that originally called for one-third beer and two-thirds cow's milk, the cheese still includes a generous amount of local brew but probably less than its name suggests. The semisoft wheels each weigh just over a pound and receive 30 to 60 days of aging. Cheese Plus buyer Jana Werner describes the aroma as yeasty and hoppy and the flavor as malty, salty and rich. Targeting a niche no one knew existed, this novelty has performed well for the San Francisco store. Carboncino A relative newcomer from the Caseificio dell'Alta Langa (makers of the popular La Tur), Carboncino adds to the long list of hits from this Piedmont producer. A robiola-style cheese made from a blend of cow's, sheep's and goat's milk, the petite, ash-covered disk Targeting a niche no one knew existed, the beer-infused Terza Birra has performed well for San Francisco's Cheese Plus. Summer Fancy Food Show Booth 529 22 ❘ SPECIALTY FOOD MAGAZINE ❘ specialtyfood.com

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