Agrì is a fresh, small, raw milk cheese characterized by its delicate flavour and particular aroma. Its production started in the Brembana Valley, in particular around Valtorta; it boasts a centuries-old tradition. It originated from the ancient custom of producing a semifinished product called "pasta di Agrì", which was carried in panniers on the shoulders to Valsassina, following the trail that runs through Piani di Bobbio. The Barzio and Introbbio artisans worked the “pasta di Agrì” into small cheeses.
Production and storage
It can be produced either from cow's milk or with whole goat's milk, although Agrì is, strictly speaking, a cow’s milk product. For its production, milk must be added with acid serum or rennet serum in order to coagulate. The curd is then collected in bundles of linen cloth and set to drain.
When the matter is dry enough, the canvas is removed and salt is added. The compound is shaped into rolls of about 3 cm in diameter, and then cut into cylinders of 5 to 8 cm.
The maturing process takes place in a cool humid environment for at least one week, and then in a dry environment. The ripening lasts for a period ranging from one to four weeks.
Of delicate flavour and particular aroma, Agrì is characterized by a soft texture, which becomes more compact in matured cheese. The crust is almost absent in fresh cheese, while in the aged cheese it is present and varies from yellow to grey.