VECCHIO VARZI, SINCE 1974
The people of Varzi have passed their salame-making tradition from generation to generation since mediaeval times. Only in the last century did this artisanal activity slowly become organized and embrace modern enterprise – leading in 1974 to the founding of the Vecchio Varzi brand and its first production premises in the heart of the old town. Production moved to new premises on the edge of town in 2001 to increase output and implement the strictest health, safety and quality standards.
PRODUCTION AND SEASONING
The new production and refining plant was designed to recreate the ambience that made the original Vecchio Varzi products synonymous with good quality. Brick cells reproduce the conditions found in the old town cellars originally used for Varzi salame.
PEOPLE WHO MAKE THE DIFFERENCE
Production processes based on excellence and state-of-the-art machinery, for the greatest food safety (including a highly efficient metal detector), consistently guarantee the finest quality for the end customer.
Now, as in the past, whether considering today’s large-scale artisanal production or the old cottage industry, it is the PEOPLE who really make the difference and whose daily efforts and passion ensure Vecchio Varzi cured meats are unique.
From the preparation of the meat and mixes to encasing and tying, often still done by hand, and the drying/ageing phases, every day the men and women at Vecchio Varzi repeat actions handed down through time in the form of cured meats that are as exceptional as those who produce them. Human intervention is of the essence in the delicate drying/ageing phases of the salame. From the initial “stufatura” and drying just after production to the ageing phase proper, which at Vecchio Varzi is split into two phases: pre-ageing and final or “long” ageing.
Pre-ageing is a special feature of Vecchio Varzi productions and improves the quality of the end product by ensuring that the drying/ageing process is a slow one, with benefits in terms of developing the aromas in each salame and exalting its organoleptic characteristics. In this phase, the “skin” starts to develop a distinctive “piumatura”, a natural white mould that covers the salame and performs a deacidifying function.
It is during the final, slow and prolonged ageing phase that human intervention becomes more skilled and precise. The operators visually and manually check the salame, feeling the product to verify its correct ageing. If necessary, they alter the humidity and temperature levels in the cellars or brush the products by hand to eliminate any excess mould, which in the right quantity favours the optimum ageing of Vecchio Varzi salame.
AN EXCEPTIONAL CURING PROCESS
Only at the end of this lengthy drying/ageing process, which may last 90 days or more for some products, can a Vecchio Varzi salame be placed on the table of the most discerning consumers. Its sweet taste, intense aroma and strong flavour making it unique, renowned and appreciated worldwide.