Production

Gorgonzola can trace its noble origins way back through the centuries. It comes from the farmland of the same name, at the gates of Milan, to which the peasant farmers used to bring their cows to graze and to rest.

Ciclo_di_Produizione_01From 1970 on, this unique product began to receive its due attention and was subject to greater regulation, culminating in the foundation of the Novara-based Consortium for the Protection of Gorgonzola Cheese.
 

In June 1996, the European Community grantedgorgonzola PDO status and established the strict criteria to be met for the award of this prestigious label.

Our company’s roots are firmly embedded in the Novara countryside and for decades we have been producing this delicious, tasty treat, never once losing sight of the centuries-old traditions behind this classic cheese, taking the upmost care to uphold them to the full.

Ciclo_di_Produizione_02bCiclo_di_Produizione_02The milk for the cheese comes only from the cowsheds of consortium members and, before being processed, it is pasteurised, a process that raises it to a temperature of at least 72 ° for 30 second.
 
This provides an absolute guarantee that no harmful bacteria remain before the cheese-making cycle begins.
 
The first step in the creation ofgorgonzola cheese involves heating it in vats at a temperature of about 30°. At SI Invernizzi we are one of the few remaining producers to carry out this process in-house, following the very best cheese-making tradition.
 
The entire production cycle takes place on our premises where hygiene and safety are guaranteed by the completely sterile environment and by our highly-skilled specialist workforce.
 
Ciclo_di_Produizione_03Carefully selected milk enzymes are added to the milk: liquid rennet and the spores of pure specially selected cultures which give this delicious cheese its characteristic blue-green veining, its creamy texture and its unmistakeable flavour.
 
Ciclo_di_Produizione_04The master cheese-maker is the one who decides when the curd produced by the coagulation of the milk is ready to be worked, the first step being to cut it with a stainless steel mandolin.
 
Then the curd is broken up and laid on special perforated tables to allow the whey to drain off.
 
Our technical staff, whose skills and dexterity have been honed over the years, monitor every detail of each production process with the utmost care, following tradition to letter, essential to guaranteeing the excellence and the consistent quality of our gorgonzola.
 
The next step sees the curd transferred to cylindrical plastic moulds, perforated around the side, and with a capacity of 15 kilos of fresh product.
 
Ciclo_di_Produizione_05These moulds, known in Italian as “fascere” or “fassiroli”, allow further excess whey to run off.
 
The curd stays in the moulds until the following morning, all the while being turned in the agile hands of our experts to aid the whey-draining process.
 
Ciclo_di_Produizione_06It is at this stage, while the cheese is still in the moulds, that the no. 60 appears on both surfaces, that being the code number that identifies the cheese maker.
 
The following day the cheeses go into the salting machine, which salts them, first around their circumference, then on the top and bottom surfaces.
 
Ciclo_di_Produizione_08Ciclo_di_Produizione_07This process is repeated the next day, after the product has spent 24 hours in a special chamber for what is known as the crucial “stewing” phase during which excess whey continues to drain off.
 
A system of detector probes monitors these chambers constantly, maintaining them at a temperature of about 20°C, with humidity of 90/95%.
 
Following a further 24 hours in the “stewing” chambers, the cheese now enters its real maturing phase.
 
Ciclo_di_Produizione_09Ciclo_di_Produizione_10The cheeses are transferred to a cold room where the temperature drops to some 4°C. The cold room temperature is also constantly monitored.
 
After seven days have elapsed, the cheeses are transferred from the cold room shelves for the firstperforating and salting process. The cheeses are placed in a machine whose stainless steel needles perforate the cheese, on one surface only, making about one hundred holes to a depth almost equal to the overall height of the cheese.
 
Before being returned to the cold room shelves, the cheeses undergo a washing process with a salt and water solution, a process repeated a number of times during maturation.
 
Ciclo_di_Produizione_11When a further seven days have elapsed, the same operation is repeated on the opposite surface. The perforations allow air to enter to hasten the development of the special mould spores injected at the beginning of the milk processing cycle.
 
Following this phase, the product continues to mature, following a pre-set cycle of resting stages in various cold rooms, at a temperature between 3 and 5°C and humidity of 90 – 100%. Ciclo_di_Produizione_12Ciclo_di_Produizione_13Ciclo_di_Produizione_14This period may last from 60 to 90 days, depending on the type of gorgonzola required..
 
Ciclo_di_Produizione_15Dolce” or mild gorgonzola, with a delicate taste, more creamy texture and less well-developed veins of mould, is left to mature for about two months.

Piccante” or mature gorgonzola, with a firmer texture, stronger taste and more clearly defined veins of mould, is matured for about three months.

 

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At the end of its production cycle the product is selected and packaged. The individual cheeses are wrapped in their signature aluminium foil embossed with the Consortium logo, the quality guarantee of this unmistakeable product, much prized on its native territory but whose fame has also spread well beyond Italy’s national boundaries.