Gailtaler Almkäse

There are many factors that influence the flavor of Gailtaler Almkäse cheese. Learn more about this fabulous cheese and you'll know how to select the best Gailtaler Almkäse when making your purchase.

Want to know more about Gailtaler Almkäse cheese? We tell you everything here, so you're fully informed about this cheese before you buy it.

Introduction

Gailtaler Almkäse is a traditional cheese with a protected designation of origin (PDO) that has a long history in the Gaitale region. The production of this Alpine cheese dates back to the 14th century, with the first mentions of pasture cheese in Gaitale and Lesachtal. The cheese is made from raw cow's milk, and occasionally, up to 10% goat's milk can be used.

Production Process

Every morning and afternoon, the cows are brought into the barn to be milked. The freshly obtained evening milk is left to cool and then transferred to the ripening room, where it is poured into circular containers called "Stotzen" or milk cubes. The natural maturation of the milk occurs overnight.

The next morning, the milk is mixed with fresh morning milk, heated to 32°C, and coagulated with rennet. The curd is then stirred until it reaches the size of a lentil. It is then heated further until it reaches the desired consistency.

The curd is extracted from the tank using cheesecloth and placed into a mold. The curd mass is slowly pressed to remove excess whey. The freshly molded cheese is then placed in a salt brine for two days to form its crust.

The cheese is matured for at least 7 months, but typically much longer. The wheels of Gailtaler Almkäse weigh between 0.5 and 3.5 kg. They have a firm, dry, and yellow rind. The interior is smooth and beige, with a creamy texture and small, uniform eyes. The cheese has an intense, aromatic, and spicy flavor.

Characteristics of Gailtaler Almkäse

  • Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) cheese
  • Made from raw cow's milk, occasionally with up to 10% goat's milk
  • Maturation period of at least 7 months, but usually longer
  • Wheel sizes ranging from 0.5 to 3.5 kg
  • Firm, yellow, and dry rind
  • Smooth and beige interior with a creamy texture
  • Small, round, and uniform eyes
  • Intense, aromatic, and spicy flavor

Conclusion

Gailtaler Almkäse is a cheese with a rich history and a distinct flavor. Its production process, from milking the cows to the careful maturation, ensures the high quality of this traditional Alpine cheese. Whether enjoyed on its own, as part of a cheese platter, or in various culinary creations, Gailtaler Almkäse is a true delight for cheese lovers.

✓ Austria