In Berkeley, Belfiore Cheese Company found its beginnings in 1987, with a small assortment of fresh, Italian-style mozzarellas and an Italian owner who grew up making mozzarella with his father in Napoli. New owners took over in 1989, and continued the traditional cheesemaking that the founder started, with an emphasis on fresh mozzarella and feta. Belfiore is one of the few small, family-owned cheese producers still in the Bay Area, and they place a strong emphasis on maintaining cheese making traditions. All of Belfiore’s cheeses are certified kosher and made without any additives or preservatives, and their milk is delivered daily from a handful of small dairies located in the San Joaquin Valley.
Belfiore cheeses have won many American Cheese Society awards, including blue ribbons for both their feta and fresh mozzarella, and their signature product is their hand crafted Fior di Latte. Fior di Latte refers to the cow’s milk origins of the cheese, versus buffalo milk. Belfiore was a pioneer in the U.S. for being one of the first producers of this fresh, delicate style of cheese, as many producers at the time were focusing on low-moisture mozzarella.