There is a great difference between a cheese that has been aged for a year and half or three years. The 18-month one is perfect, served in chunks like this with a dry white wine. It has a slightly sweet flavour.
Moving on to the more savoury 24-month one, the texture is more granular. Although it’s crumbly, it’s good shaved on salads or served with figs.
We were served a full bodied red wine (Malvasia Poem, Monte delle Vigne from Parma) with the 36-month parmesan. The taste was intense and piquant and it’s probably the best one for grating. I can’t wait to try out the sample I was given. It’ll need some thought and effort to make a dish that comes up to the standard of this cheese. I’m wavering between a risotto with porcini mushrooms or fresh tagliatelle with mascarpone and tenderstem broccoli.
If you’re in London, click on the picture to see where I went for the tasting and how you can find delicious food from Parma.