Of all the Parma salamis,
the award goes to the "Culatello di Zibello PDO", for its rarity and
delicacy, whose secret, is said to lie in its
production, lower Parma near the great Po River, where
aging is favored by the autumn fog and steamy summers.
Its story dates back
centuries, maybe to the 1300s. Some historic testimonies
highlight the exquisiteness of the “culatello”. The
Pallavicino’s, people of Lower Parma, each year send
many specimens of the famous culatello of Zibello agli
Sforza, as “a rare and exquisite thing”. Among its
famous admirers are listed Giuseppe Verdi, originally
from the typical culatello area and Gabriele D’Annunzio.
The Zibello Culatello is Denominazione di Origine
Protetta (DOP) product of which the Regulations
establish the production area in the towns of Polesine,
Busseto, Zibello, Soragna, Roccabianca, San Secondo,
Sissa and Colorno.
Regulations of Culatello di Zibello PDO
How it is produced
The culatello is taken from the thigh of an adult swine
and raised with a traditional method. From the thigh,
free of bone, first has the part of the lowest quality
meat removed, from which is taken the Fiocchetto. The
remaining part, the best, the most tender and valued, is
carefully trimmed and formed, covered in salt and
energetically massaged in, and then is placed to rest.
After rest it is introduced to pig bladder and
artistically tied in the classic form of a “pear”.
The minimum aging of 10 months in a humid cantina, with
the help of a climate typical of the zone of the river
Po, will form the typical Culatello di Zibello,
enriching it with unique and unmistakable tastes and
aromas. At the end of the aging, it should weigh between
3 and 5 Kg.
How it si done