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to show you how traditional Emmentaler cheese is made.Now, I’m actually in the village which is in a region just east of Bern.Eighty percent of allEmmentaler production comes from this region, with 150 producers.And its name comes from here.
There’s the nearby river, Emme, and tal, a meaning valley in German.In the US, it’s known as Swiss cheese.Emmentaler has iconic holes in it, and it’s also the world’s largest cheese.Emmentaler AOP can only be produced in these regions in Switzerland.It was granted AOP protection from the EU in 2002, meaning that these areas are the " protected designation of origin." But there are a few qualifications for this: The milk has to be from dairy farms no fewer than 20 kilometers away, and it must be produced using raw milk.17,700 tons of Emmentalerare produced each year in this region by 150 family dairies.Cheese production started in this area over 200 years ago.It’s a hilly region, so good for cattle grazing.The Emmentaler Schaukäserei show dairywas opened in 1989.Cesare Mimo Caci: The process of cheese starts at the farmer, so we need high-quality raw milk.Then we heat up the milk to 32 degrees.We put inside the bacteria, the rennet.We have to wait because the rennet makes a relationship between the fat and the protein.You are cutting the curds down to a size of4 up to 6 millimeters.And then you heating up over time to 53 degrees and pumping up to the forms, and then you are pressing that for 12 hours.
Ju: The cheese is pressed under hydraulic pressure for up to 12 hours.It then spends eight weeks in the warm fermentation cellar 22 degrees Celsius.It then goes into a storage cellar for up to two months before it’s collected by the wholesaler.This makes the famous sweet taste and smooth texture of the cheese.The world-famous holes?They’re created by a reaction in the bacteria.After one month of storage,a strain of bacteria, Propionibacterium shermanii, consumes lactic acid and releases carbon dioxide.These bubbles become trapped in the cheese rind and form holes, also known as eyes.But why are the cheeses so large?The size of Emmentalerwheels is heavily regulated,as most have a diameter of 80 to 100 centimeters.They need to be a minimum of 75 kilograms.For cheese produced here,a kilogram costs 19 Swiss francs, or $19,so one wheel could cost over $1,900.Cesare: We have to pay taxes also in Switzerland, and 200 years ago, they have the recommendation that you have to pay the taxes on a piece and not on a kilogram, so they make a big cheese wheel and they have to pay only once the taxes, and still 200 years we producing this minimum75-kilogram wheels.
Ju: The cheese is maturedinto a four-month Classic,eight-month Réserve,12-month AOP Extra,and the 24-month Le Roi d’Emmental.Cesare: The taste of the Emmentaler AOP, it’s unique.And we compare to copies, and it’s comparing if you take red wine and good red wine.Ju: We visited the Schaukäserei restaurantto try the cheese.I’m gonna go for a classic,it’s four-month aged.What you can see is the springy, kind of rubbery texture to it.Let’s give this a try.It’s so much more flavorsome than other Emmentalerthat I’ve had.It has a really full flavor to it because it’s made with raw milk, not pasteurized milk that you might get in the States.It’s just a very, very, kind of full, rich, milky flavor.It’s very tasty.But how does this differ to the 12-month aged?It’s a lot less kind of springy and bouncy to the touch.But that rich, nutty flavor is really starting to come through.This room, downstairs, where we went into here in the dairy,was the room where the minute you walk in, there’s a beautiful nutty aroma that hits you, and that is exactly what you can get in the cheese now.It’s gone from sort of, like, a fruity, mild cheese to something which has this texture to it and is very nutty.
To be an authentic Emmentaler cheese,it needs to have the Emmentaler logo and a bespoke cheese number.Cesare: On the rinds, we put our brand on top before we press the cheese, and it’s something like a teabag, and this is growing directly into the rind, so if you are cutting the cheese wheel into pieces,on each rind you should find a part of this Emmentaler Switzerland logo and you find also a number on top.And with this number,our customers can go onour website, Emmentaler.ch, and give this number inside, and Google Maps shows you where this product was produced and which dairy.Ju: And the dairies need to have this protection.Emmentaler is the worlds most copied cheese.Cesare: So, 95% of that,what is sold as a Swiss cheese or a cheese with holes called Emmental,are fake Emmentaler, sothe Emmentaler Switzerland,the brand, is protected by the AOP label,and we have also abacteria inside our cheese.We are the only brand, cheesebrand, who are using this one,and so we can not onlylook on the package,if it’s original Emmentaler AOP,we can also analyze this product.These are our activitiesand the brand itselfwe have people who are working onlyfor searching the originalbetween the copies.So it’s a big work behind it.