Gorgonzola

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Gorgonzola
A big blue cheese from Holiday Inn Golden Mile Hong Kong.jpg
Gorgonzola cheese
Country of originItaly
Region, townGorgonzola
Source of milkCow
PasteurizedYes
TextureSoft and crumbly
Fat content25–35%
Aging time3–4 months
CertificationItaly: DOC from 1955;
EU: PDO from 1996[1]
Related media on Wikimedia Commons

Gorgonzola (/ˌɡɔːrɡənˈzlə/; Italian pronunciation: [ɡorɡonˈdzɔːla]) is a veined blue cheese, originally from Italy, made from unskimmed cow's milk. It can be buttery or firm, crumbly and quite salty, with a "bite" from its blue veining.[2]

History[edit]

Gorgonzola Cheese with forks

Historically, gorgonzola has been produced for centuries in Gorgonzola, Milan, acquiring its greenish-blue marbling in the 11th century. However, the town's claim of geographical origin is disputed by other localities.[3]

Production[edit]

Today, gorgonzola is produced worldwide, with high concentrations of production located in the northern Italian regions of Piedmont and Lombardy, as well as production in the United States.[4] Whole cow's milk is used, to which starter bacteria are added with spores of the mould Penicillium glaucum. The whey is then removed during curdling, and the result is aged at low temperatures.

Gorgonzola pizza with bacon, onion and honey

During the ageing process, metal rods are quickly inserted and removed, creating air channels that allow the mould spores to grow into hyphae and cause the cheese's characteristic veining. Gorgonzola is typically aged for three to four months. The length of the ageing process determines the consistency of the cheese, which gets firmer as it ripens. There are two varieties of Gorgonzola, which differ mainly in their age: the less aged Gorgonzola Dolce (also called Sweet Gorgonzola), which can have a less salty taste and a slightly sweet finish, and the more aged Gorgonzola Piccante (also called Gorgonzola Naturale, Gorgonzola Montagna, or Mountain Gorgonzola).

The United States Food and Drug Administration has established what are known as standards of identity (SOIs). SOIs establish the common name for food and define the basic nature of that food and its ingredients. The US Code of Federal Regulations Title 21--Food and Drugs, Chapter I--Food and Drug Administration, Subchapter B--Food for Human Consumption establishes the production process of "gorgonzola" cheese. This SOI, in addition to establishing "gorgonzola" as the product name for this type of cheese for production in the United States, would also apply to any "gorgonzola" cheese imported from non-United States countries.[5]

Protected designation of origin[edit]

Countries where the term Gorgonzola is protected as a Geographical Indication
  Protected as Geographical Indication
  Protected as Geographical Indication (with limitations)

Under EU law, Gorgonzola is registered as a Protected Designation of Origin (PDO, or Denominazione di Origine Protetta (DOP) in Italian) sinds 1996. This means that gorgonzola sold in the European Union can only be produced in the provinces of Novara, Bergamo, Brescia, Como, Cremona, Cuneo, Lecco, Lodi, Milan, Pavia, Varese, Verbano-Cusio-Ossola and Vercelli, as well as a number of comuni in the area of Casale Monferrato (province of Alessandria). Over time, production of the cheese outside Europe has led to the genericization of the term “gorgonzola” in certain parts of the world, including in Australia.[6] As a Geographical indication, Gorgonzola produced in parts of Italy is protected in certain countries based on bilateral agreements of the European Union, membership of the Lisbon Agreement or national registration as a certification mark.

Protection of Gorgonzola as a Geographical Indication[7][8]
Country/Territory Start of protection Comments/Exceptions
European Union 21 June 1996 PDO, also valid in Northern Ireland. For Bulgaria, Czechia France, Hungary, Portugal and Slovakia also protected through the Lisbon agreement.
Algeria 5 May 2014 Within the Lisbon Agreement
Armenia 1 June 2018 Also protected as Գոռգոնձոլա
Bosnia and Herzegovina 5 May 2014 Within the Lisbon Agreement, from 1 July 2018 also as part of a bilateral agreement
Burkina Faso 5 May 2014 Within the Lisbon Agreement
Canada 21 September 2017 Use of Gorgonzola including the terms "kind", "type", "style", "imitation" etc. is allowed, as well as use by producers using the term before 18 October 2013.
China 2014 Also protected as 戈贡佐拉. From 2014 already protected as a certification mark. Since 1 March 2021 based on a bilateral agreement with the EU.
Colombia 1 August 2013
Congo 5 May 2014 Within the Lisbon Agreement
Costa Rica 1 October 2013
Cuba 5 May 2014 Within the Lisbon Agreement
Ecuador 1 January 2017
El Salvador 1 October 2013
Georgia 1 September 2014 Also protected as გორგონძოლა; and also through the Lisbon agreement
Gabon 5 May 2014 Within the Lisbon Agreement
Guatemala 5 August 2015
Haiti 5 May 2014 Within the Lisbon Agreement
Honduras 5 August 2015
Iceland 1 May 2018
India 2021 Registered as a geographical indication.
Iran 5 May 2014 Within the Lisbon Agreement
Israel 18 December 2014 Within the Lisbon Agreement
Japan 1 February 2019 Also protected as ゴルゴンゾーラ.
Kazakhstan 2017 Registered as a geographical indication.
Kosovo 1 April 2016
Liechtenstein 27 July 2007
Mexico 5 May 2014 Within the Lisbon Agreement
Macedonia 5 May 2014 Within the Lisbon Agreement
Moldova 1 April 2013 Since 2014 also through the Lisbon agreement.
Montenegro 1 January 2008 Since 2014 also through the Lisbon agreement.
Nicaragua 5 August 2015
North Korea 5 May 2014 Within the Lisbon Agreement
Panama 5 August 2015
Peru 1 March 2013 Since 2014 also through the Lisbon agreement.
Russia 2017 Registered as a geographical indication.
Serbia 1 February 2010 Since 2014 also through the Lisbon agreement.
Singapore 29 November 2019
South Africa 10 October 2016
South Korea 1 July 2011 Also protected as 고르곤졸라 (치즈의 일종).
Switzerland 1 December 2014
Togo 5 May 2014 Within the Lisbon Agreement
Tunisia 5 May 2014 Within the Lisbon Agreement
Ukraine 1 January 2016 Also protected as Ґорґондзоля. Until 31 December 2022 limited use of the term is allowed for similar products.
United Kingdom 31 December 2020 Continuation of EU PDO, valid in England, Scotland and Wales
Vietnam 1 August 2020

Consumption[edit]

Gorgonzola may be eaten in many ways, as with all blue cheeses. It is often added to salads, either straight or as part of a blue cheese dressing. Combined with other soft cheeses it is an ingredient of pizza ai quattro formaggi (four-cheese pizza). It is often used as a topping for steak, sometimes in the form of a sauce with Port or other sweet wine. It may be melted into a risotto in the final stage of cooking, or served alongside polenta.

Nutrition is as follows: 1 ounce (28 grams) of gorgonzola contains 100 calories, 9 g of fat, 375 mg of sodium, 1 g of carbohydrate and 6 g of protein. It contains 5.3 g of saturated fat.

Literary References[edit]

James Joyce, in his 1922 novel Ulysses, gives his hero Bloom a lunch of "a glass of Burgundy and a Gorgonzola sandwich". In his 1972 book Ulysses on the Liffey, critic and Joyce scholar Richard Ellmann suggests that "Besides serving as a parable that life breeds corruption, Gorgonzola is probably chosen also because of Dante's adventures with the Gorgon in the Inferno IX. Bloom masters the monster by digesting her."[9]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Gorgonzola" (in Italian). Archived from the original on 2004-11-15. Retrieved 2013-03-01.
  2. ^ "Gorgonzola DOP". BuonaLombardia. Regione Lombardia. 18 March 2020. Retrieved 5 April 2020.
  3. ^ Helm-Ropelato, Rebecca (2 February 2005). "The birthplace of Gorgonzola. Maybe". The Christian Science Monitor. Boston MA.
  4. ^ "Gorgonzola".
  5. ^ "CFR - Code of Federal Regulations Title 21". www.accessdata.fda.gov. Retrieved 2020-12-14.
  6. ^ US Dairy Export Council v Consorzio Per La Tutela Del Formaggio Gorgonzola, 2020-03-24, retrieved 2020-12-14
  7. ^ "oriGIn Worldwide GIs Compilation". ORIGIN-GI. Retrieved 7 May 2022.
  8. ^ "Gorgonzola". GI View - European Union. Retrieved 8 May 2022.
  9. ^ Richard Ellmann (1972). Ulysses on the Liffey. Oxford University Press. p. 191. ISBN 978-0-19-972912-8.

External links[edit]