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Mar 10, 2009 11:04 AM

Fresh pecorino

Anyone know a local (Brooklyn/Manhattan) source? Had it in Italy but never seen it locally. thanks.

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  1. How fresh? 3-6 months aged (think consistency of young Asiago) or younger? I used to help run the cheese counter at Park Slope's Blue Apron Foods (Union between 7th and 8th Aves) about three years ago and we carried Pecorino Fresco, with a blue daisy label. It was semi-soft, creamy and had just a little barny twang to it. A great breakfast cheese melted over hearty multi-grain bread... good luck!

    3 Replies
    1. re: brooklyndigest

      I think these sheep milk cheeses are pretty seasonal.

      I saw a young tuscan sheep cheese at Fairway the other day - also, the cheeses from Old Chatham Sheepherding are very good, including their sheepmilk brie. Not sure whether they are frequently available in our brooklyn stores.

      1. re: brooklyndigest

        Thanks, i'm two blocks away and will check them out. Yes these (the ones we had in Tuscany) were quite young, soft and slightly twangy, and I was surprised that I preferred the younger to the more aged (they had 3 variations at the place we visited).

        1. re: bklynbiker

          I love the young tuscan sheep cheese too, some with red rind some black, some white, and younger sheep cheeses generally. They have a lovely milk flavor. I just saw the one at Fairway (looks early in the season) - I suspect Blue Apron will have them later in the year. The tuscans tend to be really pricy here, for some reason.

      2. I thought pecorino had to be aged. Am I wrong?

        1 Reply
        1. re: NYJewboy

          'Pecorino' doesn't solely refer to one cheese (I imagine you're thinking of Pecorino Romano). It basically means 'sheep's milk cheese.' 'Pecora' means sheep in Italian... so... Pecorino! You can find pecorinos that are fresh, soft and runny to aged and crumbly.

        2. My go to spot would be DiPalo (both for their cheeses and their knowledge of the products).

          2 Replies
          1. re: boccalupo

            Anyone know of a good Italian or Argentinian substitute for manchego? Seems to me that as the price rises the quality is going down and a recent purchase of allegedly 6 months aged cheese tasted quite bland. I would be interested in comparing it to other sheep milk cheeses... maybe even that Bulgarian stuff one sees in Halal stores?

            1. re: Flaco

              a decent variety of italian sheep cheese, including pepato, at a reasonable price at Coluccio's and the guys will let you taste. Also from time to time at costco (the usually have manchego and also sometimes Petit Basque) You might also want to look on 18th Ave, in the Ironbound (like at Seabras, tho the prices seem to be going up on their cheeses) or at the greek stores like Titan in Astoria.

          2. Alleva on Grand Street surely has pecorinos at varying ages. A common fresh type is called primo sale, in small wheels from Sicily or Sardinia, sometimes with peppercorns (pepato). Cacio di Roma is a widespread brand (Fairway); at higher price points, look for marzolino from Tuscany at DiPalo. Yes to Jen's rec for Coluccio--also try on 18th Ave/81st Frank and Sal's. Get tastes, since quality, condition, and ages vary widely.

            1 Reply