Burrata is Dish #38 in our countdown (serving suggestion shown)
Welcome to 100 Dishes to Eat Now, the tasty countdown leading up to our “Best of 2012” issue. Tune in every day (weekends, too!) for a new dish from the Fork in the Road team.
Edward Faicco from Sorrento, Italy — just southwest of Naples along the Bay of Naples — founded Faicco’s Pork Store in 1900. Almost from the beginning, the place made and dispensed mozzarella, a fresh full-milk cheese popular in southern Italy, where it’s known as fiore di latte (“flower of milk”).
Just recently, Faicco’s started selling tubs of burrata imported from Italy, an interesting addition to a stock of meats, cheeses, and groceries that are partly from the U.S., partly imported from Italy. Burrata is another soft milk cheese, but one that is made by stuffing cheese shells with cheese strands and full cream to make a cheese that’s rich and soupy in the middle, perfect for bread or scooped with crudite.
Why does Faicco’s import the cheese? Couldn’t they have been making it all along, since burrata is clearly a cousin of mozzarella?
Because burrata was not invented until 1920, when it originated in Apulia, the heal of the boot. And that was long after the founder of Faicco’s had left the old country.
in fact, Faicco’s has been playing something of a catch-up ball game as new Italian fads — of which burrata is one — have swept across the city. But now you can visit this venerable old store in the West Village for things like single-estate olive oils and boutique-y dried pastas never known to Italian immigrants of the last century.
Faicco’s Pork Store
260 Bleecker Street
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on September 9, 2012