25
May/03

Know Your Cheese Names: PECORINO ROMANO


Pecorino Romano, literally ‘sheep’s milk from Rome,’ is one of the more popular grating cheeses in the world.  Eaten by Romulus himself, PECORINO ROMANO is a Protected Designation of Origin in Europe and a Certification Mark in the U.S., where the Pecorino Romano consortium certifes that the cheese must conform to the following:

(1) characteristics (hard; cylindrical shape with flat sides; generally produced in blocks between 20 and 35 kg in weight and between 25 and 35 cm in height; rind is eventually coated with white or black natural plastic films; compact, white or slightly straw-yellow body; characteristic piquant taste; minimum of 36% fat on the dried substance);

(ii) production methods (made from 100% whole, fresh sheep’s milk curdled with lamb’s rennet between October and July; dry or humid salted in special places; aged at least five months not for grating use or at least eight months for grating use); and

(iii) regional origin (the area of Italy comprising the territory of the regions of Latium and Sardinia and the province of Grosseto (Tuscany)).

Use of the term “PECORINO ROMANO” on cheese that does not meet all of the aforesaid requirements is punishable in Italy by fine or imprisonment.

LOCATELLI ROMANO is not a PDO but a brand, owned by Nestle.

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