Is anyone else obsessed with Marie Kondo and her new Netflix show? I don’t want to make any assumptions, but I think Fiscalini Cheese might be taking a page out of the queen of clean’s book as it welcomes a new Head Cheesemaker into its fold. The idea of the Kondo Method is to keep what sparks joy and give thanks to that which has provided a good service, which the Modesto-based company is doing in style as it says goodbye (and gives thanks) to Mariano Gonzalez and makes room for Alex Borgo on its team.
I chatted with Laura Genasci, Managing Partner, to learn more about Fiscalini Cheese’s latest announcement and the new cheesemaker bolstering its ranks.
“We started making cheese in 2000, and within a year, we brought Mariano on board as our Head Cheesemaker. Eighteen years later we are still crafting the same great cheeses that put us on the map, but under new management in the plant,” Laura shared with me. “Alex is bringing a fresh set of eyes, and we are thrilled to have him on board.”
Prior to joining Fiscalini, Alex spent 11 years as the Operations Manager and Head Cheesemaker at Marin French Cheese, during which he grew his fresh cheese and soft-ripened experience and know-how. But that’s not to say that Alex’s cheese-journey began with Marin French. In fact, Laura revealed that Alex is no stranger to the industry. In addition to getting the privilege of calling himself a fifth-generation cheesemaker, Alex’s father owns cheesemaking plants in Canada.
“While Alex is very experienced in the realm of fresh cheese, Fiscalini specializes in aged sharp cheddars. Currently, he’s enthusiastic about learning Fiscalini’s process, and we’re looking forward to Alex eventually incorporating his knowledge into our operation,” Laura said. “We’re especially excited to have Alex on board because his expectations include increasing production, decreasing losses, and overall perfecting operations. He’s been with us for a little over a month, and already he has found ways to improve productivity and quality. We’re confident that with Alex, we will continue to produce award-winning cheeses like we have for the past 18 years.”
These award-winning cheeses Laura speaks of include Fiscalini’s Signature line, boasting the likes of San Joaquin Gold (a hard-Italian style cheese that was the company’s very first), Bandage Wrapped Cheddar (an English-style clothbound Cheddar), and Lionza (a Swiss-style cheese that pays homage to an old family recipe dating back to Switzerland).
“We are family-owned, and we hand-craft our cheese on the same land that my great-grandfather purchased in 1914. We use only milk from our cows, which gives us control of the process from start to finish. We care for our land and animals, and even recycle our waste to reuse and capture greenhouse gases to power our farm and facilities,” Laura told me. “We want to continue this legacy for generations to come since we’ve been blessed to be here for many generations already.”
Congratulations to Mariano and Alex as they enter the next stages of their cheesemaking careers! For more of the latest dairy, deli, bakery, and specialty foods news, keep checking back with Deli Market News.