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Mar 29, 2010 01:14 PM

Fresh mozzarella?

I'm having trouble believing that there's nowhere in Montréal to purchase fresh mozzarella. Is this true?

I've scoured Milano's but can't find it; Hamel has mozzarella di bufala packed in water...but haven't found any locally made mozz.

It looks like the last time this was discussed ( ) we were out of luck - anyone know if the situation has changed since 2008?

And if there's nothing local, what then are the higher-end pizza places (e.g. Bottega) using?

My homemade pizza suffers.

65 Rue Saint-Zotique E, Montreal, QC H2S1K7, CA

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    1. re: KzenCass

      Thanks for posting this great link KzenCass, I really love this site! Great resource. But I would comment that I don't think they offer fresh locally made mozzarella. This is a real rarity. The only place I've had fresh locally made mozzarella is in Italy, and in New York City. I would love it if we had a source here in Montreal, but I think Saputo has killed any chance of that. It's funny, we have such great cheese in Quebec, but yet no fresh mozzarella? What gives?

      1. re: moh

        I omitted to read the 'locally made mozz' part..... ;)
        I know the Mozza and Buratta that they have imported from Italy and it's extremely fresh.... I bought some Buratta as a sample for my chef and I to try this past friday..... we are trying to come up with an Asian presentation for it! :)

        1. re: moh

          On top of that, you'd think that with such a large italian community and noted interest for Quebecers for italian cuisine, someone would have tried to market artisanal fresh mozzarella. If I had money and time, and maybe a bit of success with cheese making attempts, I'd try it. That being said, I know there's a creamery in Vermont that makes fresh mozarella di Buffala from Bufflone raised on their farm.

          Eited to include the link:

          1. re: Campofiorin

            Just went to their website and this is what it is written:
            Is there hope for us ?

            1. re: ManuelF

              I wonder if someone in our area made them an offer that they couldn't refuse...

          2. re: moh

            Yes - when I lived in NYC it seemed like you could get it almost anywhere. Smoked, too.
            I sheepishly figured somewhere in Little Italy would supply it.

            Maybe I'll have to experiment with fresh cheese curds on pizza.

            1. re: michaelmas

              It won't work too well as fresh cheese curds don't melt really well. Your best bet would be Mozzarella di Buffala although Fiorella works pretty well too.

        2. There's the fresh mozzarella made in Ontario. But it seems it only gets delivered to Southern Ontario and Toronto. See:

          1. The farm in vemont owned by Frank Abballe(owner/president of Marc Angelo foods) has relocated to Quebec(Ste-Hyacinthe area I believe) they are producing buffalo milk. The entire production is being sold to Saputo.

            The question which I cannot get an answert for is "what is Saputo producing with the Buffalo milk???"

            If anyone know I would love to hear.

            15 Replies
            1. re: twiddle504

              Just saw my first container of Saputo mozzarella du bufala at Fruiterie Mercier. $6 for 250g.

                1. re: cherylmtl

                  At which Costco did you find it? I went to the one in Brossard yesterday and they didn't have it. They had the Bari/Saputo fior di latte they call mozzafina di latte, but not the buffalo mozzarella.

                  By the way, the buffalo product is not called mozzarella but mozzarina. I don't get why Saputo is using made-up names for its cheeses. Mozzafina, mozzarina and fetos all sound like cheap dollar store knock offs of better cheeses. What's wrong with calling something by its real name?

                  1. re: SnackHappy

                    The one on Bridge street - we picked it up last Friday. And I have no idea why they call it mozzarina either...

                    1. re: SnackHappy

                      Maybe they can't use the real names because these are DOP items?

                      1. re: hungryann

                        I don't think those apply outside the E.U. Anyway, the designation is being used in Ontario and the U.S. so I wouldn't think that it's being done for legal reasons.

                      2. re: SnackHappy

                        The name is different because it isn't real mozzarella di bufala. As Saputo says on their website "Mozzarina Mediterraneo cheese is similar to Mozzarella di bufala imported from Italy." The key word being similar. And if I can remind you, Velveeta is similar to melted cheddar...


                        1. re: EaterBob

                          That's the wrong cheese - here's the correct link - still not sure why the different name.

                          1. re: cherylmtl

                            OK this time they use the term "parallel taste." Which still means it isn't Mozzarella di bufala.

                            1. re: EaterBob

                              The entire sentence reads "with its parallel taste to buffalo mozzarella imported from Italy" - so it seems like they are referring to the Italian product versus the Canadian product. There's nothing in it that wouldn't qualify it as being called mozzarella di buffala, as far as I know...

                              1. re: cherylmtl

                                I have absolutely no interest in getting into an argument with you. You seem to come from the "if it walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, it must be a duck" camp. Which is fine. I personally believe that there is probably a reason why they decided not to call it "Mozzarella di bufala," and the most likely reason being that it isn't.

                                That all being said, the origninal sentence in French reads "La Mozzarina di Bufala convertira les gastronomes et les amateurs de cuisine italienne car son goût se démarque des mozzarellas de bufflonnes importées d'Italie."

                                Which loosely translates to "The Mozzarina di Bufala will convert food lovers and lovers of Italian cuisine as its taste differs from buffalo mozzarella imported from Italy."

                                Ultimately, I think, someone should taste it and report back on their findings.

                                1. re: EaterBob

                                  I have tasted it - I bought it, and used it, and found no difference between it and other mozzarella di bufala that I have bought in the past (it is actually better than some of the Italian ones I have tried recently). I had some on pizza, and had some just drizzled with olive oil and balsamic vinegar, and if anyone could tell the difference between the Saputo mozzarina and an Italian mozzarella di bufala, I would be highly surprised. It is no less expensive, though - about $12.00 for 250g (and that was at Costco). And it still doesn't come close to the taste of freshly made (buffalo or non-buffalo) mozzarella.

                                  1. re: EaterBob

                                    It came to me after a discussion i had with a friend on another matter, that the names were probably created so they could be trademarked.

                                      1. re: SnackHappy

                                        If that was the case, then they would say that their mozzarina is a 'mozzarella di bufala' as opposed to 'similar'. There's another reason for the new name because people who dish out 12$ for 250g of cheese want the real thing not something close.
                                        Also their copy writer sucks.

                    2. The original comment has been removed
                      1. Something escapes me... I often buy Mozzarella di Buffala, and occasionally Burrata, and just assume that the Italian imports would be on top of the game.
                        Why look for local ones?

                        (This is a totally innocent question. I'm not questioning your judgement on this, mr. Mas, just really curious :)

                        4 Replies
                        1. re: Brucemtl

                          I guess you haven't heard about this whole global warming thing.

                          1. re: Brucemtl

                            The packed-in-water stuff certainly isn't bad - I shouldn't be so whiny.

                            But mozzarella made that very day - or even a day or two before - is really a treat. And because it hasn't been sitting in water as long, it's a little dryer and easier to work with.

                            I'm making do with what we have here - I'm just surprised that with such an Italian presence in the city we wouldn't be overflowing with fresh mozzarella.

                            1. re: michaelmas

                              Hi michaelmas here is an update. I contacted the people at quality cheese in Toronto(makers of mozza di buffalo from water buffalo herd in ontario) they distribute through various stores in the toronto area but also a couple of stores in ottawa. Il negozio and pestos. They are also talking to some specialty shops in Montreal who are interested but the problem is production. They do not have enough milk production to supply the montreal stores. The cheese is made fresh a few times a week if not daily. You can get it fresh from the same day in Toronto and probably Ottawa as well. If you are interested there will be fwater buffalo cheese festival in Stirling Ontario on August 28 where they will be selling fresh mozza di buffalo as well as other products from buffalo milk. The festival(went last year) has various chefs preparing various meals from water buffalo cheese products(mozza,scamorzza etc...) It cost about 10 dollars and you can eat all you want from the various tents set up all is done outdoors in a very quaint small town setting. The farmer who produces the milk is there as well as a few of the heads from his herd it is really quite a fun experience.

                              1. re: twiddle504

                                Not really in the Montreal area, but for those of you who are interested, this year's Stirling-Rawdon's Water Buffalo Food Festival is this saturday!
                                Here's the link: