Where this famous Italian cheese is made.
by Gabriele Monti November 6th, 2012
A while ago the consortium of the Parmigiano Reggiano made the map below to explain where the cheese is made, in order to educate consumers and tourists about the area of production.
Protected designations of origin.
The PDO is a food labelling standard that you find in Europe to protect food that has to be made only in certain areas. This is the case of Parmesan cheese, which is required to be made from the milk coming from the production area. The organoleptic characteristics of the raw materials will be transferred in the final product. Therefore you cannot make parmigiano reggiano using milk coming from other areas, simply because the outcome will not be the same.
The discipline of cheese making.
The consortium has a discipline that imposed on each producer. The discipline is nothing else than a set of strict rules made according our ancient tradition. In short to make the cheese you need the right raw material: high quality milk and of course the skills the knowledgeable cheese masters of Emilia.
Bologna and Parmigiano Reggiano.
Bologna produces the parmesan cheese only on the left bank of river Reno. In total there are only 10/12 producers in this province. If you stay in Bologna and decide to take a cheese tour, it is most likely that you will have to go to Modena to see the production.
Coming from east, Modena is where the real parmigiano production starts. The area is of a particular interest if we look at the parmesan cheese produced on the Appenini mountains which is said to have a higher quality. This is probably due to the better water and air, being away from the industrial areas. In Modena is also possible to find organic parmesan produced from heirloom cows such as the bianca Modenese.
Although being in Lombardy and not in Emlia Romagna, Mantua falls in the production area. in fact there are several producers of the cheese in the area south of the Po’ River. Mantova is also a producer of Grana Padano.
Reggio Emlia – The cradle of cheese making.
Bibbiano is a small town about 20 km south of Reggio Emlia, it is the confirmed cradle of the Parmigiano Reggiano cheese. We have the first written accounts of the cheese of Parma dating back at least 9 centuries. Reggio Emilia is often overlooked by the tourists but is well worth a stop if you are interested in food.
Parma and the cheese of.
Parma along with Reggio Emlia shares highest production amounts of the area. Also the town already confirmed itself as world’s gourmet destination and food basket of Italy.
Visiting and touring a Parmesan cheese dairy in Emilia Romagna, Italy.
It is possible to visit the dairies however it is best to arrive at least the day before since the cheese is only made once a day and it is early in the morning. In the past we organised tours for people staying in Milan or in Florence, and thanks to the high speed trains it is now possible to arrive early in the morning for the visits. Emlia Delizia is a proud organiser of Parmesan cheese tours in Italy from Modena, Bologna and Parma.