Steirischer Bergkäse

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

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

Of course, the best way to get to know Steirischer Bergkäse cheese is by tasting it, but on our website, you'll find clues to determine if Steirischer Bergkäse is the right choice for your palate in advance.

Is Steirischer Bergkäse cheese the right fit for you? Keep reading and you'll find out.

Steirischer Bergkäse cheese simply couldn't be omitted from this encyclopedia of the world's cheeses, and once you read the information we offer about it, you might decide it's essential for your pantry too.

Maybe until now you were unaware of the existence of Steirischer Bergkäse cheese. Or perhaps you've sought it out because Steirischer Bergkäse is your favorite. Either way, we provide plenty of information about this cheese here so you can get to know it better.

Introduction

The history of Austrian cheese starts with the Celts, who settled in the Alpine region in the 1st century BC and contributed to their knowledge of livestock and alpine grazing. From the 9th century, monasteries played a significant role in cheese production. By the late 18th century, the first dairy cooperatives emerged and shifted the production of mountain cheeses from pastures to valleys. After Austria joined the European Union, cheese production increased, resulting in new and interesting varieties. Although there are now sheep and goat cheeses, traditional mountain cheeses still dominate the country's cheese diversity. Steirischer Bergkäse (literally "Mountain Cheese from Styria") is an authentic mountain cheese that meets all the requirements to be recognized as such. The production of alpine and mountain cheeses plays a crucial role in sustaining family farms. Approximately 60% of all Austrian mountain cheese comes from Vorarlberg, although delicious specialties are also made in states such as Tyrol, Styria, Salzburg, and Carinthia. While alpine cheese is only made in summer in mountain cabins, mountain cheese production takes place year-round in modern facilities in the valleys.

The Making of Alpine Cheese

Alpine cheese is produced when shepherds in the Alpine region transform their cattle's milk into cheese right after milking. If the milk from the mountainous areas is sent to valley cheesemakers for further processing, the resulting cheeses are named mountain cheeses. All traditional alpine and mountain cheeses are extensively composed of grass-fed milk. Cows only feed on grass and aromatic herbs, and in winter, hay. Farmers, many of whom are organic, deliberately avoid feeding their cattle based on fermentation, thereby increasing the quality of the milk. The aromatic and spicy flavor of alpine and mountain cheese intensifies as the maturation time is prolonged, requiring a lot of manual labor.

Steirischer Bergkäse: A Typical Mountain Cheese

Steirischer Bergkäse is a typical mountain cheese made from raw milk from grass-fed cows without silage. The milk used to make this cheese is supplied by mountain farms in selected mountainous regions of Styria, between the Semmering Mountain and the border with the province of Salzburg. Styria is the second largest federal state, consisting of three-quarters forests, meadows, or vineyards, which is why it is called the "green heart." This cheese belongs to the hard cheeses with a minimum fat content of 45% of the dry matter and a maturation period of at least three months. It is characterized by a firm, sliceable texture and a light, soft, pale yellow paste with scattered cherry-sized eyes. The taste is a fragrant and delicate aroma of the essences of mountain meadows, which is a result of the microflora found in the mountains where the milk comes from. It is important to consume the cheese at room temperature to fully experience its nuanced flavor. I have enjoyed this wonderful cheese in snacks, breakfast and cheese platters, and it is delicious in pasta, soups, as well as with potatoes, vegetables, or creams. It pairs perfectly with a regional rosé wine called "Schilcher Origin." This is a very special rosé wine with sunny red tones and a fruity, slightly sparkling flavor that complements the cheese superbly.

Conclusion

Steirischer Bergkäse is a prime example of Austrian mountain cheese. Its rich history, meticulous production process, and distinct flavor make it a true delicacy. Whether enjoyed as a standalone snack or incorporated into various dishes, this cheese is sure to please any cheese lover's palate. Its pairing with a regional rosé wine enhances the overall tasting experience. So, next time you want to savor the essence of Austrian cheese, let Steirischer Bergkäse take you on a delightful culinary journey through the heart of the mountains.

✓ Austria