Characteristics - Montebore is a characteristic conic-shaped cheese obtained by overlapping three cheeses of different diameters. The final product is named “Castellino (“Small castle”) and has a weight of about 0.5-1 kg. Ripening time ranges from 6 to 60 days. The crust is smooth, regular with a light pale-yellow colour. The dough is white or ivory-white with small and sparse holes. The texture is very soft and elastic in the fresh cheese, hard, solid, compact and friable in the ripening cheese. The odour is fine and delicate with milk and cream characteristics in fresh cheese but savoury, salty and intense in aged products.
Production area - The historical geographical area of Montebore production is the hamlet of Montebore in the town of Dernice (Province of Alessandria ) but actually there are no producers in this town. The only two Montebore cheesemakers are located in other towns within the Province of Alessandria, namely in Mongiardino Ligure and Fabbrica Curone. Montebore cheese was also classified as "Presidio of Slow Food" but only one producer is listed in this "Presidio" and follows its production rules.
Cheesemaking - Montebore is produced from raw cows’ milk or a mixture of ewes’ and cows’ milk. The milk is coagulated by the addition of bovine liquid rennet at a temperature of 30-36° C. The curd is cut twice to produce granules with the size of hazelnuts. After draining the curd is put in moulds for at least 10 hours. The cheese is then dry-salted for about 4-5 hours. After 10-12 hours, the shapes are washed with salty hot water and staked to obtain the castle shape.
How to cite this article
Zeppa, Giuseppe (2004). [On-line]. Available from: https://www.dairyscience.info/index.php/cheeses-of-the-piedmont-region-of-italy/79-montebore.html . Accessed: 26 September, 2023.