The word for sheep in Italian is pecora - hence the name Pecorino. There are many different types of Pecorino produced, particularly throughout southern and central Italy where the landscape lends itself to dairy sheep production.
Made by Masseria Rosa d'Alvano in the mountainous area of Basilicata, this farmstead Pecorino is made with 100% sheep's milk from the cheesemaker's own flock. The fresco (young version), is aged for about two or three months, and is rich, milky and has a softer, slightly open texture.
The semistagionato (mid-aged) is aged about four to six months, during which time it develops a firm, dense, smooth texture and a full, sweet and nutty flavor.
The most mature cheese is the stagionato version which is aged for a minimum of one year and is less salty than many pecorinos of a similar age. The stagionato Pecorino develops a hard texture and a strong, slightly sharp flavor with notes of grass.