Monte Veronese is the best known cheese of the Lessini Mountain region of the Verona pre-Alps, which is known for its lush pastures. There are a total of 13 dairies in the consortium that are allowed to use the Monte Veronese DOP label. Production dates back to medieval times when the cheese was originally used for bartering. It was awarded DOP status in 1993. DOP is a name control regulation similar to the French AOC used for food and wine. The Monte Veronese DOP di Malga is the elder statesman of the Monte Veronese family, in that it is aged for at least two years before we get it. The cheese is particularly interesting to us because it is made using milk from cows that have been feeding on the lush pastures of the mountainous Lessinia region. This cheese is special enough to be entered into the Slow Food Presidia, which has a focus on preserving traditional foodways around the world. We find this cheese has notes of tropical fruit, hay and a subtle sweetness that is at once nutty and fruity. This cheese deserves its own place on any cheese plate, but it would work equally well as a grating cheese, or paired with a drop or two of balsamic vinegar.


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