Even though our roots are in the land of the cheesehead, we aren’t talking Cheddar or the foam hat varietal. Today we are talking Italian cheese called Pecorino. Pecorino is the name given to all cheese made from ewe’s (sheep) milk.
There are 4 main types of Pecorino however the one most often available in the US is the Pecorino Romano. The other 3 are Pecorino Sardo, Pecorino Tuscano and Pecorino Siciliano. From their names you can guess that they come from different parts of Italy, Sardinia, Tuscany and Sicily. Each of these cheeses come in different styles depending on how long they have aged. The most mature is known as stagionato (seasoned or aged) are to die for! We’re talking a hard crumbly cheese with nutty and buttery flavors. These cheese are often served after dinner with pears, walnuts and a bit of honey…but we like them just about anytime especially with a bit of Italian red wine!
One can find this lovely cheese in stores, deli’s and of course on market day but how cool would it be to go right to the source? That’s right, nothing could be better than visiting a local pecorino cheese farmer, have him show you how the cheese is made and then sit down and do some sampling with him. These out of the ordinary experiences are the things that make a trip special.
We’re talking “market day” in Italy! Nearly every town in Tuscany and Umbria have a weekly market day and there is nothing more special than being a part of one.
Usually held in the mornings, the town square is filled with dozens of trucks with literally everything from fruit to nuts. There will be stalls selling shoes, clothing, olives, bread, meats, cheeses and everything in between. Now don’t get us wrong, this is not a tourist attraction, this is how the locals shop and it’s amazing to be able to participate. We love to sample our way through the market, always buying things to eat throughout the rest of our trip or to pack for our family back home When we aren’t sampling we are photographing the array of items for sale. On our Wine Centric Italy trip in October 2014 we’ll be experiencing market day in Greve in the Chianti region. I know we’ve said it before, this is another one of those experiences you must have when visiting Italy.
This custom tour starting in Rome, and then focusing on Tuscany is not available anywhere else. With just the right balance of history, renaissance art, amazing scenery, savory gastronomy and Italian wine – this is one tour you may not want to miss.
Our next information night is Wednesday, Jan 22 at Vino Etcetera in Oconomowoc, Wisconsin. Perhaps you have never heard of Oconomowoc – no worries, you can still get details on the trip at our web page, where you can also find the tour fact sheet and registration forms.
Please enjoy some of our photos from Tuscany and inspiring quotes on Italy in this Video.
In October 2014 we are hosting a very special small group wine experience to Italy with Vino Etcetera sommelier Corienne Winkels.
Our very first information night will be Tuesday January 7, 2014 at Vino Etcetera, 120 E Wisconsin Ave, Oconomowoc, WI. Please RSVP (262-538-2140 or firstname.lastname@example.org) if you plan on attending. We promise lots of fun and perhaps even some Italian Wine!
So what’s so great about this trip? Only 24 people are going, so it promises to be an intimate and relaxed tour. And if you’re wondering how much fun we have – just ask anyone that went with us to Burgundy & Provence in 2013. Our France wine trip was a most memorable and fantastic time, with Italy shaping up every bit as amazing.
During our tour you will discover: The Eternal City – Rome, the worlds smallest state – Vatican City, the classic Tuscan hill town of Cortona, Umbria’s grand hill town of Orvieto, the picturesque renaissance town of Montepulciano, the small town with the powerful wine – Brunello, the medieval city of Siena and the unofficial capital of Chianti – Greve.
We have lots of wine tastings and winery visits planned – note these are not ones found on “normal” tourist routes, but quite boutique and hand selected just for this trip. Preliminary details are available on our web page, with more information coming soon.