Updated: Nov 29, 2020
The only Italian butter so far discovered in Dubai- it's unique!
Italian butter is unlike any other Western butter out there. The first thing you notice when you unwrap the package is how white it is. It's not quite as translucent as lard but it's nearly as white.
I first encountered Italian butter when we were living in Geneva and would road trip down to Tuscany for long weekends (tough gig, I know). Italy has a robust artesian butter industry and many supermarkets have a selection of locally produced butters in addition to the European industrial staples. Always looking to try something different, we had a blast trying out the different offerings in the Tuscan hills.
Virgilio butter comes from Lombardy and it is one of the larger dairy companies in Italy. It's readily available across Europe and the world, evidently. Consistent, reliable and affordable, Virgilio can even extend itself to an organic line which includes ricotta and Parmesan. Italy also seems to make a big deal about labelling the origin of your butter, be it from cream or from 'centrifuge', i.e., derived from separating the cream remnants out of leftover whey from cheese production. This butter is the latte(r).
Virgilio Organic Unsalted Butter Appreciation
Butter Break Down
Appreciation Date: 02/06/2020
Country of Origin: Italy
Point of Procurement: Coop Hypermarket, Al Barsha, Dubai
Purchase State: Fresh
Milk: Cow, pasteurised.
Fat Content: 82%
Salt Content: 0.0%
Ingredients: Organic pasteurised cows' milk; starter culture.
Declared Possible Allergens: Cows' milk.
Company Website: http://www.consorzio-virgilio.it/en/
In which we discuss Virgilio's Organic Unsalted butter.
No child input for this one. Probably best, really.
Of course, #NotAllItalianButter but it's truly incredible how white this butter is. Another brand we used to buy when we were in Italy is (somehow) whiter but this stuff is still remarkably pale though not quite Will Smith's Teeth 2020 white. Forgive the photography. It was evening after the children had gone to bed. And, as you can see, the poor butter had a tough time getting home in Dubai summer heat. Everybody in the car was sweating, including the butter.
The second thing to notice is how crumbly it is. For a butter that's 'only' 82% milkfat, it's remarkably stiff. My husband deplores unspreadable butter and even at room temperature, this stuff still had integrity. This, combined with the colour, and the certified organic origin would indicate that these cows are being fed a tightly controlled and possibly grain-fed diet, which would transform their milk into something very different in nutritional profile compared to mountain pasture butter (much more yellow, and soft due to the Omega 3s and beta carotene present in fresh grass).
It has hardly any aroma but there is still a faint whiff of dairy. It seems to be the antithesis of French butter in that it is so discrete, you'd barely notice it. Perhaps it's meant to be paired with copious amounts of truffle.
One should be so lucky!
This is an exceptionally good Blank Canvas butter. It's light and very... 'clear', providing an excellent background of fat without any dairy somehow.
Colour: Will Smith's Teeth 2004.
Aroma:Faint dairy. More of a suggestion.
Taste: Light, clear, faint dairy fat.