Casa Madaio is an acclaimed cheese affineur (maturer) and producer located in Salerno, Italy. The business is owned by the Madaio family, and their home, a castle with three towers, is reflected in the distinctive logo of the company. Mr Madaio feels this also represents the connection of the past with the future, with the towers symbolizing his three children Angelo, Renata, and David and thus the future of Casa Madaio.
Both cheese production and the cheese aging facility are small scale, and sales of cheeses are primarily to small specialty shops and restaurants, both in Italy and abroad.
The business is centered at two different locations. The cheese making facilities are in Eboli, along with the central office, while the aging caves are located at Castelcivita, in the heart of the The National Park of Cilento and Vallo of Diano.
The area is steeped in history. The caves have been used to age cheeses by the Madaio family for four generations, and the company places great value on the preservation of the history and flavors of the land, working closely with local universities and with the Slow Food movement to further research.
Casa Madaio makes both fresh goat and buffalo milk cheeses at their location in Eboli. In addition, they also purchase other cheeses made at small mountain dairies nearby that they age themselves at Castelcivita.
Paglierino, which means Italian for ‘straw’, is one of the cheeses that Casa Madaio brings in and matures in their cellars. Milk for production is sourced from sheep grazing within the national park in Cilento.
Shortly after production, the young cheeses are brought to the cellars at Casa Madaio where they’re aged for three months. During this time, the wheels become firmer and more straw-like in color as they lose moisture and the flavors concentrate.
The texture is compact, but not firm. Flavors are similar to a young Pecorino with notes of grass and citrus accompanied by a slight peppercorn spicy-ness.