What’s DOP and What’s Not

Modern life is full of acronyms – IBM, URL, FYI, TGIF, LOL – but nothing matters more to a dedicated foodie than DOP. Denominazione d’Origine Protetta, Italian for ‘Protected Designation of Origin’, is considered ‘the’ designation for quality and original production. According to Just Food, DOP “…is used to describe foodstuffs which are produced, processed and prepared in a given geographical area using recognized know-how. Examples include: West Country farmhouse Cheddar cheese and Jersey Royal potatoes in the UK; Camembert de Normandie and Roquefort cheeses in France; and olive oil, Parmigiano Reggiano, Prosciutto di Parma (dry-cured Parma ham) in Italy.” To earn the DOP designation, a product must meet stringent requirements set by the European Union Food Quality Scheme Project. Once earned, the designation is jealously guarded.

When you sink your teeth into a bite-sized piece of Lucini’s DOP Organic Stravecchio Parmigiano Reggiano, you’ll understand why DOP is DOP. One of the first products to be designated DOP by the EU, Parmigiano Reggiano is the queen of Italian cheeses with its subtle nutty undertones and unique crumble-in-your-mouth texture. Paired with fresh red grapes, it’s a taste extravaganza. The city of Parma is rightfully proud of this national treasure and its sister, Prosciutto di Parma.

So next time you’re having a get-together, pull out the Lucini’s DOP Organic Stravecchio Parmigiano Reggiano, break it into bite-sized chunks, pair it with field fresh grapes or just picked crunchy apples and your favorite full-bodied red and prepare yourself for enjoyment Italian-style.

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