Northland Cheese Problems

We originally used Grande cheese until Roma/PFG stopped carrying it. We then switched to a northland whole milk/part skim blend. When our volume went up we were able to start having a 5 cheese blend made for us by northland. Whole/Part/Asiago/parm/romano. About twice a year we would have a batch that would come in bad. Moisture content off, burned, would not melt. Like fake gas station pizza. Attributed this to change in seasons and what cows ate. Recently this has started happening about every six weeks. My first thought it one of the Italian style cheese ratios were getting off and causing a burn. So we switched back to just the Part/whole blend. Second batch in and same exact problem. This leads me to believe some quality control issues at Northland. Roma reps have tried but are not much help. Their response was of course try and get me to use Bacio which I don’t like, and does not perform in our concept.
Anyone else having these problems? And what are some other brands of Mozz I should try that mimic grande
We use about 2000lbs a week.

What area of the country are you in?


It sounds like an age problem to me. Pay attention to the manufacturing dates and see if you can find some correlation between how old the cheese is and how well it performs. I find that our custom manufactured cheese performs best between the 2 week mark and 5 week mark. It’s very consistent between these ages but cooks very differently if younger or older than this.

Contact Sean Williams, sales rep for the southwestern region of Pacific Cheese company, and see if they can hook you up with a few samples of their North Beach Mozzarella, Bella Rosano Mozzarella and the Cheswick Mozzarella.

All of them are fantastic pizza cheeses and rival the quality of Grande, yet at a much lower price. They also feature a wide array of Italian hard cheeses.

Plus, they service the Kansas area.

Sean Williams, Senor Vice President of Sales

Is switching back to Grande an option? We switched to US Foods when Grande stopped selling to Roma and were able to get a great price from them since we were buying a lot of other products as well. They’re usually ~30 cents cheaper than our other supplier

Thanks, Ill reach out to Sean. Switching back to Grande isn’t a option. The cheapest I can get from the two suppliers here is $2.85 a pound. Also when we do blind tests it does not always come out on top. So cant justify 60 cent price increase. Paul, Ill watch the cheese dates. I always check those for old cheese which has never been a problem. Ive never considered too young though. Thanks guys

Maybe you could get a 50/50 skim whole blend you like.

Have your own Asiago/parm/romano mix in a 1/9 pan and add a 3 finger pinch on every pizza.

Alto dairy makes a blend similar to yours

I use a house brand cheese, packed by Empire. Never any issues.

Have had bad luck with Sarrento, restaurant depot brand, Polly-o, Arrezzio, 1950

Good luck with Grande, Saputo just too expensive

The North Beach and Bella Rosano cheeses go for around $1.89 (6lb block) here in CA, and the Cheswick Feather shredded for about $2.24 (5lb bag). I think the Bella Rosano Whole Milk Mozz is the closest you can get to the Grande WM. I mix the North Beach and Bella Rosano at a 25/75 ratio with awesome results. No excessive oiling off or browning. Nice creamy color and excellent stretch.

The Cheswick is great as well, but cost a bit more.


Any updates on your cheese issue? Did you get that solved?

Another batch showed up from Northland that had problems so I had to make a switch quick. Brought in Grande and basically every whole milk mozz sample Roma had. Ran a bunch of blind tests. I figured Grande would win, and I was willing to make that switch in the short run till I could figure out another alternative. I was surprised when a favaloso whole milk kept coming out on top. I’m not sure this is the fix forever, but my options are pretty limited in my location. Customers here seemed to prefer a Wisconsin whole milk over California

have you tried Saputo. FYI plant #'s 141 & 165 are WI