Castelmagno DOP: an Italian Cheese from Piedmont

Castelmagno cheese is one of Italy's most ancient cheeses with origins dating back to the 13th century. In that epoch some farmers began to produce this cheese in the Cuneo mountains and used it to pay their local Seigneur for the privilege of letting them work his land. 

Castelmagno is produced in the sole province of Cuneo. Being a DOP awarded cheese, only the milk coming from the three communes of Castelmagno, Pradleves and Monterosso Grana is allowed for the production of this Italian hard cheese.

After its golden period in the 19th century, Castelmagno disappeared for a long time to re-enter the scene only in the 1980s. 

In 1996, it has been awarded the PDO recognition and today is likely to be considered Piedmont's most renowned type of cheese.

castelmagno cheese 24 months

Castelmagno DOP: blue cheese or not?

Castelmagno is made from pasteurized cow's milk, rarely with the addition of small amounts of a mixture of goat's and sheep's milk. The percentage of goat's and sheep's milk may not exceed 20%, though. 

The cheese ages in natural caves for at least one month and up to 5 months (or in some cases more).

Sometimes, Castelmagno is also referred to as a blue veined cheese, but actually, the blue veins may or may not be present in this type of cheese.  Unlike Gorgonzola cheese, Castelmagno is not inoculated with penicillium spores. The eventual formation of molds in this type of cheese is due to a completely natural process. 

Usually, molds only appear in those forms of cheese aged for more than 5 months. The longer it matures the more blue veins the cheese will develop.