Piave Stravecchio, ~13# $/#
Piave is an intensely flavored, hard, cow’s milk cheese produced in the northeastern region of the Veneto. Piave’s flavor calls to mind fragrant fruit and nuts. Like Parmigiano Reggiano, Piave is made using a combination of two milkings (from the evening and the following morning) from cows which graze on fresh plants in the mountain pastures. Piave can be eaten at the age of 6 months or aged up to a year or more—the cheese gains character as it matures. At 12-18 months old, Piave Stravecchio (which means “extra-aged”) is firmer and drier than the younger Vecchio. As Piave ages, its texture and flavors intensify with a color change from pale yellow to a deeper sunnier yellow. A real crowd pleaser for cheese connoisseurs and novices alike, Piave is a perfect choice for a cheese plate. Its unique nutiness lingers in the mouth and pairs beautifully with red wine.