vegetale-low-res-2Produced in the southern Italian region of Basilicata, Vegetale is as compact and hard to find as the tiny hillside town from which it came. Coming from a long line of cheesemakers, Mario Pietro Viola raises his own small flock of goats for the raw milk that goes into this unique cheese. Although uncommon outside the Iberian Peninsula, Viola uses thistle rennet to coagulate the curd, hence the name “Vegetale.” Hints of the flower are detected in the otherwise delicately tangy paste. 3/2#