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CHEESE: Piave Vecchio

It’s Columbus Day, so let’s celebrate a great Italian cheese. Here’s a favorite cheese of professional cheese buyer and guest blogger Jeff Shearer, of Mandi Foods:

As the long summer days turn over to the cooler nights of autumn, our food choices move away from the fresh cheeses and lighter dishes to more of the hearty cheeses, roasts and casseroles. Fall is a great time to enjoy Havarti, Gouda, Cheddar, Brie and Camembert.

And Piave Vecchio. This hard Italian mountain cheese has a fine, rich taste and golden color—a buttery cheese that combines the flavor of Parmigiano Reggiano and farmhouse Cheddar.

Piave Vecchio pairs well with polenta and risotto, and as a table cheese with Zinfandel, richer white wines (such as Chardonnay) and medium-weight reds such as Merlot and Pinot Noir. Beer drinkers can enjoy it with amber, nut brown or IPA ales.

 

Piave Vecchio, a terrific Italian mountain
cheese. Photo courtesy PiaveVecchio.it.

 

The cheese gets its name from the Piave River, which flows through the mountain valley in the Italian Alps where it is produced. The name means old (aged) Piave cheese. If you find one called Piave Stravecchio, it is “extra-old,” the extra aging creating a cheese that tastes like a young Parmigiano Reggiano.

Grate it over fried polenta and soups, add it to grits or a risotto, shave it over a green salad or include it on the cheese plate.

Piave Vecchio is a gem often hidden in the long shadow of its very famous cousin, Parmigiano Reggiano. Piave Vecchio deserves its own time in the spotlight.

  • Learn more about Piave Vecchio and get recipes.
  • Brush up your cheese know-how in our Cheese Glossary.
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