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Puglia Cheese

Puglia Cheese make authentic Italian style mozzarella, caciotta, caciocavallo and other cheeses. The founders of the company are both from the Puglia region of Italy.

Note: Food With A Story has included these details on behalf of Puglia Cheese. If you are from Puglia Cheese please contact us to get profiled and/or have the listing transferred.

Cape Town, Western Cape

Retail outlets

This product is listed as available from the following retail outlets:

Neighbourgoods Market (Woodstock)  
Website    Email

True blooded Italians bring real mozzarella to South Africa

Davide and Fabio, who were both born in Italy, are seasoned professionals of the catering industry and passionate lovers and critics of the Italian cuisine. In true Italian style, their dinner-parties are not complete without a healthy debate over the meal prepared and the historic origins of the ingredients used. So after moving to South Africa in 2010, a food-related new business venture was the obvious choice; the question was simply: what? 

They soon discovered a need for truly authentic Italian ingredients in South Africa. In Italian culture, fresh mozzarella forms an integral part of almost all dishes; from starters, to pastas, pizzas and risottos. But the “mozzarella” Davide and Fabio found in Cape Town was not the true Italian breed - which is white, moist and soft (and doesn’t become like plastic on cold pizza!). So the team convinced another friend, and mozzarella maestro Cosimo Rotolo, to join them in Cape Town. Puglia Cheese was born. 

The low-down on mozzarella

Mozzarella is a fresh cheese, first recorded in 1570 in the cookbook of a renowned chef and cook to the papal court, Bartolomeo Scappi. There are still disagreements today about its origins - either from the South of Italy or Central Italy with the introduction of the Asian Buffalo – but it may have been invented as far back as 6000 BC by Asian nomadic tribes. 

There are two types of mozzarella: made from cow’s milk and buffalo milk. Buffalo mozzarella is much richer in taste, and more arduous to work with. In Italy it is a delicacy, with only one kilogram being produced for every ten kilograms of cow mozzarella. Davide explains that neither one is better than the other, it is merely a matter of taste “like the difference between your mothers bolognaise and my mothers bolognaise”. To get the best buffalo mozzarella, he says, one would need to travel to a particular region of south-east Italy. 

The process of making mozzarella is a delicate one: the properties of the raw cow's milk vary vastly depending on what type of grass the cows are eating and other environmental conditions. White milk with the right levels of acidity is needed in order to ensure top quality mozzarella. And Puglia Cheese insists on the highest quality of milk so that they don’t have to introduce any additives. The milk is currently sourced from a wide range of farms, but they are hoping to develop a good relationship with some small farms that will enable them to prescribe the conditions that will produce the best milk for their cheese. 

Less is more

Puglia Cheese is artisanal; maestro Cosimo makes it by hand, which means they produce less cheese but it allows for a higher variety of shapes, such as the nodini (‘little knots’) and the burrata (a mozzarella ball filled with soft ripped mozzarella soaked in double cream). He also makes the traditional mozzarella balls – Fior de latte – as well as caciovalla and scamorsa types (amongst others). To honour the traditions of South Italian villages, Puglia Cheese has also produced its unique caciotta cheese, in honour of its new host country. They have named her Primo Fiore, the 'First flower' - a soft, creamy cheese that  leaves a milky aftertaste perfect for blending with preserves or jelly and a dry Chardonnay. 

Only seven months in and the business is expanding really quickly – many of the top-rated restaurants and delis in Cape Town are Puglia Cheese customers and the list is growing. Part of their mission involves educating South African’s about mozzarella and their other cheeses, and they provide some great recipes on their website. They also invite customers to submit their own recipes on their Facebook page.

Davide and Fabio will soon be producing other Italian food products, such as sun-dried tomatoes, to add to their repertoire. So there is much to look forward to!

Benefits of Puglia Cheese

  • Locally made authentic Italian cheeses.
  • Made from top quality milk.
  • No additives.
  • Cheese contains conjugated linoleic acid and sphinogolipids which help prevent cancer, as well as Vitamin B.

Davide talks about Puglia's range of products

Puglia cheese making process

Davide and Fabio from Puglia Cheese


In the Gocce di latte range:

  • Nodini
  • Burrata
  • Fior di latte


  • Caciotta

You can purchase Puglia Cheese products at the following delis:

  • Giovanni’s
  • La Bottega
  • Melissa’s
  • Sababa 

Puglia Cheese supplies the following Cape restaurants and hotels:

  • 95 Keerom,
  • A Tavola,
  • Aubergine,
  • Bella Italia,
  • Caffe’ Milano,
  • Caveau,
  • Cetti,
  • Il Leone
  • Limoncello
  • L’Aperitivo
  • Magica Roma
  • Meloncino
  • Mezzaluna
  • Mount Nelson Hotel
  • Mozzarella Bar
  • Nonna Lina
  • One & Only
  • O’ways Cafe
  • The Power and The Glory
  • Table 13
  • Test Kitchen
  • Trattoria Maranello

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