Pecorino Sardo PDO is a semi-cooked cheese produced with whole sheep’s milk obtained from animals belonging to the Sarda breed. It is produced in two distinct typologies: Dolce (sweet) and Maturo (mature).
The production area of Pecorino Sardo PDO is within the entire territory of the Sardinia region.
Historical documentation regarding the different techniques used for cheese production in Sardinia dates back to the end of the XVIII century, when cheeses were distinguished as being bianchi (white), fresa (milled), spianatu (level), rossi fini (fine red) and affumicati (smoked); these last two categories can be considered the precursors to Pecorino Sardo PDO. The cheese was originally produced using very unique artisan techniques, such as the direct immersion of scorching rocks into the milk in order to heat it. At the beginning of the XX century, these techniques were displaced by more modern practices, such as the use of thermometers, the filtration of the milk and the use of machinery, guaranteeing improved hygiene in the transformation of milk into cheese. The production of this cheese continued to expand after the Second World War.
The full aromatic and unique flavour of Pecorino Sardo PDO comes from the unique characteristics of the milk of the Sardinian breed of sheep raised in the inland mountains of Sardinia, which are rich with aromatic vegetation.
Appearance and Flavour
Pecorino Sardo PDO has a cylindrical shape and flat surfaces, with a variable weight of 1 to 2.3 kg for the Dolce type and 1.7 to 4 kg for the Maturo type. The colour of the cheese ranges from white to straw yellow, depending on how mature it is. The consistency is compact with a few eyes, soft for the sweet cheese. The rind is smooth and thin: white to straw yellow in colour for sweet cheese; dark yellow to brown for Maturo. The Dolce type is sweet-fragrant or slightly sour, while the Mature cheese is stronger and pleasantly piquant.
The product is marketed as Pecorino Sardo PDO Dolce (ripened 20-60 days, blue label) or Pecorino Sardo PDO Maturo (ripened for at least 120 days, green label). It is sold year-round, whole, in large pieces, and in pre-packed slices. The cheese must bear the initials of its name in ink, the PDO seal and the identification box of the producing company; the label must be attached to the surface and bear the designation and product logo.
Pecorino Sardo PDO has a long shelf life if the instructions on the label are followed, especially during hot weather. The Dolce type is mainly consumed as a table cheese, served in flakes with fresh vegetables, or as a main dish with grapes and pears. The Maturo type is best eaten at the end of a meal and is delicious when accompanied by bread, olive oil, and pine nuts, or grated to add flavour to pasta dishes.
PDO (Protected Designation of Origin)(ES). Protected designation of origińe (PDO) stands for a product for which the principal steps for production are done following a well-established technique within the same geographical area, which gives the product its characteristics. Year of registration 1996
384 - 400 kcal per 100 gr.
23.5 - 25 gr. per 100 gr.
32 gr. per 100 gr.
40 - 45 %
5,1 - Individual visits per month (average)
170 - All individual visits
18 08 2016 - Date of publication of this article
25 01 2017 - Date of last edit