Author Topic: Grande:Not Blown Away Just Yet  (Read 9537 times)

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Offline chickenparm

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Grande:Not Blown Away Just Yet
« on: February 05, 2012, 11:20:03 PM »
I recently purchased a bunch of stuff from penn mac,and I ordered some Grande cheese as well.I ordered both whole and part skim milk mozz loaves.

I have only used the whole milk mozz on 3 pies so far.I am not blown away.It is not much better than some other store cheeses I have bought in the past.I was really hoping for that "OMG,this is the Cheese I was searching for!"

But Its not there yet.

Don't get me wrong,its a very good cheese,it melts great and when you eat it raw,it has a sweet,salty,and buttery taste.

Yet when melted on my pies,I'm not getting excited or blown away by the flavor.

I still have not tried the Grande part skim milk mozz cheese yet.I will next week.Maybe I will like this one better.
We shall see.I was really hoping this would nail the cheese I was searching for.It hasn't yet.


-Bill


Offline BrickStoneOven

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Re: Grande:Not Blown Away Just Yet
« Reply #1 on: February 05, 2012, 11:40:12 PM »
I had the same experience as you. I got a box of diced 50/50 W/S and it didn't really have any taste. Then I got the box of 50/50 Skim/Provolone, that's when I noticed the difference. The provolone adds a really nice salt bite that the W/S didn't have. If you still have some left add in some provo. My go to for NY style is W/S/P.

Online norma427

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Re: Grande:Not Blown Away Just Yet
« Reply #2 on: February 06, 2012, 06:12:33 AM »
Bill,

I also used Grande for awhile and wasn’t blown away by it either.  It does melt great though. I still purchase small amounts from a local pizza place for some experiments, but agree there are better cheeses or combinations of cheeses.

Norma
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Offline chickenparm

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Re: Grande:Not Blown Away Just Yet
« Reply #3 on: February 06, 2012, 02:31:44 PM »
Thanks everyone.I think I may like the skim better,because I have used other part skim milk brands before and they were very good on a pizza.We shall see.I thought about buying the east coast blend next time,but will try that provolone mix next time.
 :)
-Bill

Offline dmcavanagh

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Re: Grande:Not Blown Away Just Yet
« Reply #4 on: February 06, 2012, 03:35:36 PM »
I'm going to try some Grande in the near future. To tell the truth, NO mozzarella I have tried ( and I've tried several) have very much flavor. Years ago mozzarella was much more flavorfull and much stringier then anything I find today. Maybe I'm just getting old, but I think that mozzarella has changed for the worst in resent years. And fresh mozzarella has even less taste then the dry mozz IMO. I have made the addition of some cheddar a standard when making NY style pizza most of the time. Without it, the pizza just doesn't have much cheese flavor.

Online scott123

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Re: Grande:Not Blown Away Just Yet
« Reply #5 on: February 06, 2012, 07:42:50 PM »
Bill, are you sure that you're melting the Grande sufficiently?  Grande needs to bubble well, brown a bit and oil off in order to reveal it's true potential.   In order to really bubble it appropriately, this means:

A thin thickness factor (no higher than .08)
A fine shred (no chunks/slices)
Room temp or warmer sauce
Slightly warmer than fridge temp cheese
Not too much sauce (you should see the skin through the sauce)
Not too much cheese (full coverage, but not much more than that)
Sufficient top heat to brown the rim a bit

I've actually had major issues getting good cheese bubbling with my traditionally pale-ish rims. Heating the sauce helps a bit, but I have to be careful not to cook the sauce in the microwave.

One or two of the legendary NY pizzerias do use a provolone blend, but I think the majority use straight whole milk. Part skim blends are good for pepperoni pies, as the combination of the fat from the pepperoni and the fat from the whole milk tends to be overkill.  Part skim blends are also more cost effective, because you end up with more milk solids, so less cheese goes further. As far as part skim melting or tasting better than WM, that's not something I've ever seen.

Offline chickenparm

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Re: Grande:Not Blown Away Just Yet
« Reply #6 on: February 06, 2012, 10:40:50 PM »
Scott,
Yes,the grande cheese was bubbling big time.I have cooked enough pies to tell whats going on with the cheese thus far.Grande is a great cheese,but it did not surprise me in flavor like I was hoping for.

I will do a few more experiments,and see if anything changes.I'm not out to put the product down at all.I just was not overly impressed and will use up the rest of the whole milk mozz and the part skim.

I do love the fact that when you make a pizza with it,and the cheese melts,you can put the pizza out on a pan and let it sit there for Hours.Then,you can reheat the slices and it melts nicely again.I can see this type of cheese being good for slice shops.
:)



-Bill

Offline Zing

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Re: Grande:Not Blown Away Just Yet
« Reply #7 on: February 08, 2012, 08:20:29 AM »
Chickenparm:

How old is the Grande cheese you were shipped? The first four digits of the quality code on the loaves indicate the month and day the cheese was MANUFACTURED. I have bought Grande cheese from foodservice distributors that was well past the shelf life, as recommended by Grande. This happens especially when buying from a split carton.

Offline chickenparm

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Re: Grande:Not Blown Away Just Yet
« Reply #8 on: February 08, 2012, 01:26:18 PM »
Chickenparm:

How old is the Grande cheese you were shipped? The first four digits of the quality code on the loaves indicate the month and day the cheese was MANUFACTURED. I have bought Grande cheese from foodservice distributors that was well past the shelf life, as recommended by Grande. This happens especially when buying from a split carton.

The code says 1205328.Would that mean the date was December 5?
Thanks.
 :)
-Bill

Offline chickenparm

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Re: Grande:Not Blown Away Just Yet
« Reply #9 on: February 13, 2012, 12:35:37 AM »
After a few more experiments,I won't be mail ordering Grande again.I even used it for chicken parm tonight and while it melts nicely,its not tasty at all.I also used the part skim milk grande on a pizza yesterday and it sucked.No wow factor or wow flavor.

It didn't burn or anything,it just has no impact of flavor,nor does it remind me of any NY pizza shop cheese I used to eat at.
 ::)




-Bill


Offline Zing

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Re: Grande:Not Blown Away Just Yet
« Reply #10 on: February 24, 2012, 10:23:31 PM »
The code says 1205328.Would that mean the date was December 5?
Thanks.
 :)

Yes, that would mean it was manufactured on December 5th, 2011.

ADDENDUM: Grande says the cheese shouldbe used withn 42 days of date of manufacture:
http://www.grandecheese.com/products/Pages/ProductGroup.aspx?Level=1&ProductGroupID=1&ProductCategoryID=2
« Last Edit: February 24, 2012, 10:26:21 PM by Zing »

Offline dmcavanagh

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Re: Grande:Not Blown Away Just Yet
« Reply #11 on: February 24, 2012, 10:44:31 PM »
I just "invested" in a 6+ lb. block of Grande so I'm hoping the stuff is damn good. I usually get Sorrento in 5lb. bricks for around $2.25 a pound. The Grande was more than double that. To tell you the truth, I haven't found any mozzarella to be very tasty lately. I've been adding some cheddar to my mozz on NY style pies to add a bigger kick of flavor. Be carefull though, the cheddar has a tendency to oil off more then the mozz.

Offline Jackie Tran

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Re: Grande:Not Blown Away Just Yet
« Reply #12 on: February 24, 2012, 11:39:03 PM »
Bill, I guess with all things pizza, you are either a fan or you are not.  I have read some posts on this forum about the greatness of grande and then I have read an equal number of people that say it's not that great.  I bought a block of whole milk Grande from PennMac about a year or so ago and did not think it was great in flavor.  It wasn't bad but side by side test, both the wife and I preferred Stella shredded mozz from SAMs.  I did several tests not telling her which cheese was which.  Only I knew.   I've yet to try it again lately so maybe my tastes have changed, that is a possibility.   On the upside, I did note that it held up to the heat very well and resisted burning or oiling off.  This might be a big plus for longer or hotter bakes, I'm not sure.

Chau

Offline chickenparm

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Re: Grande:Not Blown Away Just Yet
« Reply #13 on: February 25, 2012, 03:07:49 AM »
(GFS)Gordon's Food Service whole milk mozz tastes better than both versions I have of grande cheese.I really wanted Grande to shine but it was no big deal.It tastes great when you eat it raw,and it melts great,but when the pie is done,its no that good IMO.

I am not out to put grande down,because the slices I left out all night to the next day,the cheese was still white and melted again on reheat.It was excellent for that.I just do not find the flavor to be anything better than what I can get local or a road trip somewhere.

 :)
-Bill

Offline c0mpl3x

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Re: Grande:Not Blown Away Just Yet
« Reply #14 on: February 25, 2012, 03:10:03 AM »
I'm going to try some Grande in the near future. To tell the truth, NO mozzarella I have tried ( and I've tried several) have very much flavor. Years ago mozzarella was much more flavorfull and much stringier then anything I find today. Maybe I'm just getting old, but I think that mozzarella has changed for the worst in resent years. And fresh mozzarella has even less taste then the dry mozz IMO. I have made the addition of some cheddar a standard when making NY style pizza most of the time. Without it, the pizza just doesn't have much cheese flavor.

giant eagle 1lb brick mozz, best mozz ive ever had
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Offline dmcavanagh

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Re: Grande:Not Blown Away Just Yet
« Reply #15 on: February 25, 2012, 04:19:17 AM »
giant eagle 1lb brick mozz, best mozz ive ever had

Tell me more, I've never seen or heard of Giant Eagle mozzarella. Who makes it, who sells it, where can I get some, why is it the best? ???

Offline c0mpl3x

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Re: Grande:Not Blown Away Just Yet
« Reply #16 on: February 26, 2012, 02:09:09 AM »
Tell me more, I've never seen or heard of Giant Eagle mozzarella. Who makes it, who sells it, where can I get some, why is it the best? ???

www.gianteagle.com
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Offline communist

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Re: Grande:Not Blown Away Just Yet
« Reply #17 on: February 28, 2012, 11:04:50 AM »
Bill, I understand your point of view.  I am a Grande man, and feel it is essential to my pizza.  Admittedly, this is probably more passion than science, but we do agree on several points.  Grande melts nicely and does not brown too quickly, and I do a quick 4 minute steel plate bake with broiler assist and do not like brown mozzarella.  And it does not excessively oil off.  It does have a nice taste uncooked, but I agree, much of that nice taste seems to disipate with baking. 
I'm going to try some Grande in the near future. To tell the truth, NO mozzarella I have tried ( and I've tried several) have very much flavor. Years ago mozzarella was much more flavorfull and much stringier then anything I find today. Maybe I'm just getting old, but I think that mozzarella has changed for the worst in resent years. And fresh mozzarella has even less taste then the dry mozz IMO. I have made the addition of some cheddar a standard when making NY style pizza most of the time. Without it, the pizza just doesn't have much cheese flavor.
  I agree.  A generous sprinkle of pecorino romano pre-bake gives me the flavor boost I need.

Offline c0mpl3x

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Re: Grande:Not Blown Away Just Yet
« Reply #18 on: February 28, 2012, 08:51:23 PM »
www.gianteagle.com

my review
(will add pics in a bit im transferring them from my phone)
very creamy, buttermilk color. not wet packed, but almost as soft.  very light half&half taste, tastes like cheese/milk with zero chemical aftertaste. the slightest acidic tartness, tastes like hard apple cider, less like apple and very hard to detect without a seasoned palette, though.   mouth feel: velvety. clean, 'fresh glass of milk' aftertaste. 

it also melts and stings beautiful
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Offline ThePieman

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Re: Grande:Not Blown Away Just Yet
« Reply #19 on: March 02, 2012, 05:19:31 PM »
giant eagle 1lb brick mozz, best mozz ive ever had

I have to agree it is very good cheese. Probably the best consumer grade cheese I've ever used. But I find it a bit on the bland side. It's flavor is akin to a quality ricotta, somewhat buttery. Consistency of this cheese is among the best I've ever seen. I find it's melt a tad peaky and lacking good browning. It is very soft so I freeze it a bit before shredding. I also tend to enjoy this cheese on the bottom of the sauce. But that's just me.  :chef: