Gratin Naturale Media
Founded by Luigi Guffanti in 1876, Guffanti Formaggi originally produced Gorganzola. In order to cave-age his cheese, Mr. Guffanti purchased an abandoned silver mine in the Varese province of Italy. When his sons, Carlo and Mario took over the business in the early 20th century, they began exporting their cheese to Argentina, California and other regions where large numbers of Lombards and Peidmontese had emigrated. Today, while Guffanti is still famous for its Gorgonzola, it also produces and ages a wide range of cheeses from throughout Italy for sale both domestically and abroad. Gratin, also called Toma Brusca is a cooked and pressed cow’s milk cheese from Piedmont. The small, but hefty cheese has a surprisingly intense sweet flavor. This is as a result of the milk being allowed to curdle naturally, without the used of rennet during the first step in the production process.
The dense ivory colored paste is enveloped by a dark rind, which is spattered with yellow, grey and white molds. When young, the paste is so dense and firm that it is friable, but with age, the paste breaks down, becoming supple and more yielding.
It is suggested that Gratin should be paired with full-bodied red wines and beer. This is a cheese that can, and should be enjoyed on its own.