Inside the Cheese Cave

Beneath the earth's surface, the Grotte di Introbio work their magic, imparting unique tastes to these Italian treasures

Valsassina is renowned as "The Cheese Valley" thanks to its Karst landscape characterized by dolomitic limestone rock, traversed by numerous cracks referred to as "Lanche." Through these crevices, often crossed by underground streams flowing from the mountaintop, a circulation of currents and cold air from the depths of the earth was created. This air maintained a constant temperature, both in summer and winter, ranging from 10 to 14 degrees Celsius, depending on the altitude of these cracks. These crevices were often located on the mountainsides, steep grassy slopes, and in the plain at the valley floor.

The discovery of this phenomenon by the people of Valsassina, the fresh air emanating from the mountain's interior, led to the flourishing activity of cheese aging in the region between the late 19th century and the mid-20th century. Much like today, cheese was often produced in the Lombard plain, especially in the lower Bergamo area and the provinces of Crema, Lodi, and Milan, before being transported to the valley to age in the renowned grottoes or cheese cellars. These natural refrigerators provided ideal temperatures and humidity for cheese, fostering the growth of microflora that, then as now, contributed to the development of unique scents and flavors.

Marco Ciresa of Gildo Formaggi takes us on a journey inside these cheese aging grottoes and unveils their wonders.

Your Dynamic Snippet will be displayed here... This message is displayed because you did not provided both a filter and a template to use.