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Reggiano vs. Grana Padana

Davwud Mar 23, 2007 12:58 PM

So, is there a difference?? Other than price of course.

I just bought a hunk of Reggiano. I ususally buy GP since it's cheaper and I like it. I decided to see if it was worth paying more.


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  1. pitu RE: Davwud Mar 23, 2007 01:22 PM

    so...you have it, what do you think?
    I never had GP, but I like parm-reggiano

    1. f
      FAL RE: Davwud Mar 23, 2007 04:09 PM

      Grana taste a litte sweeter then reggiano. They are both made with cows milk and age the same way and also under the same quality control of Italy. I think Grana is great over risotto.

      1. s
        SLRossi RE: Davwud Mar 23, 2007 04:11 PM

        Seems to be a fairly big difference in richness of flavor. I largely use GP for everyday use, but always use Reg when cooking any kind of a special meal.

        1. m
          mangiatore RE: Davwud Mar 23, 2007 04:21 PM

          Grana Padano and Parmigiano Reggiano are the same type of cheese: grana. Parmigiano Reggiano is just considered to be the best grana. Grana is produced throughout northern Italy and most families use it in lieu of Parmigiano (less expensive, same cheese).

          1. Melanie Wong RE: Davwud Mar 23, 2007 11:47 PM

            Did you taste a difference? If not, then no need to spend the extra money.

            Here's a link to an earlier discussion you might find helpful.

            1 Reply
            1. re: Melanie Wong
              mangiatore RE: Melanie Wong Mar 24, 2007 10:26 AM

              If you're grating it the difference is almost undetectable. If you're eating it by itself, most people like parmigiano best. But again, pamigiano IS grana. It could just as easily be called "grana parmigiana."

            2. Davwud RE: Davwud Mar 24, 2007 03:23 PM


              I had a little bit of grated GP in the fridge so I did a side by side comparison. I found the PR to be a lot smoother or refined. The GP had more discernable bite to it. That could be because I've had it for a few months. It also seemed to have some crystals in it.


              2 Replies
              1. re: Davwud
                mangiatore RE: Davwud Mar 24, 2007 05:35 PM

                Interesting. The crystals are actually a trademark of grana. It sounds like your grana padano was aged longer than your parmigiano (or fresher). Check the age on the PR. Is it the one year?

                1. re: mangiatore
                  Ruth Lafler RE: mangiatore Apr 24, 2009 09:04 PM

                  Right. What's missing from this comparison it the relative ages/grades of the cheeses. For example, the PR is buy (at Costco) is aged 36 months -- it's darker in color and has a lot more crystals than less aged cheese.

              2. s
                smarchesini RE: Davwud May 6, 2007 10:30 AM

                Both are types of Grana cheases regulated by separate sets of rules set by "Consorzi". The main difference is that cows producing Parmigiano-Reggiano eat only grass and cereals, and no antibiotics. If a cow is cured by antibiotics she will be suspended from production. Grana Padano cows are fed sileage, which is fermented, and their milk require the addition of a natural preservative to prevent spoilage.

                Chemical analysis shows that Parmigiano is a natural source of and has a higher concentration of Monosodium glutamate (MSG), which is a flavor-enhancer. Even greeted it will make the difference by bringing out the food's flavor.

                The difference might be mild for novices, but it is praised by connoisseurs. At the top of the scale, a small improvement can be expensive.

                1 Reply
                1. re: smarchesini
                  bananasf RE: smarchesini Apr 24, 2009 07:19 PM

                  This is a really interesting article. Says Grana Pandano is not of lesser quality but the region is larger resulting in larger production than Parmigiano. http://tinyurl.com/4yuad7

                2. s
                  Sal Vanilla RE: Davwud Apr 25, 2009 12:17 PM

                  To me GP is far more salty. Too salty for me. And it is not quite as good chiseled off the block and scarfed down with wine while slaving away in the kitchen.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: Sal Vanilla
                    BamiaWruz RE: Sal Vanilla Apr 26, 2009 03:32 AM

                    I'm going to try to get my hands on some GP, if it's saltier then I think that's great because somehow I think PR needs more salt, it's just not to my taste and I love cheese! I prefer a more local traditional turkish/egyptian dry cheese which has a little more salt, sharpness and less "creaminess"

                    1. re: BamiaWruz
                      markabauman RE: BamiaWruz Apr 26, 2009 04:20 AM

                      Like everything, there are varying levels of quality. I've had some P-R, of questionable origin, that wasn't too good. On the other hand, I had some G-P from DiPalo in NYC last year that was outstanding. I'll often grate a little of each together to put on pasta, etc. to get some of the characteristics of each.

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