Story Time: The Legend of LoFrisco’s 7-hour Journey for the 1,000-Pound Provolone
Do you love cheese? How much? Do you, for example, love cheese enough to drive seven hours from Connecticut to Canada so that you can make the first cut into a 1,000-pound cylinder of provolone?
No? Well, Anthony LoFrisco does.
Of course, there is a backstory that led to LoFrisco’s urge to become the Cheese-Seeking Missile, and like many backstories, it reaches back to his childhood.
The Italian LoFrisco lived in Brooklyn during WWII. Unfortunately for the cheese-lover, during WWII, Italian cheese was barred from entering the country, and LoFrisco missed it dearly.
Then, one day, 12-year-old LoFrisco was playing stickball with his friends when they heard that a local store had just received “the biggest cheese in the world.” This turned out to be a 12-foot-long, 1,000-pound cylinder of provolone cheese. The mighty cheese had an “incredible impression” on young LoFrisco, and years later, he suddenly was struck with dairy-product-fueled nostalgia when he saw a story about a giant provolone at a grocer in New Jersey. Visions of that first, great cheese dancing in his head, LoFrisco called the grocer, but it turned out the provolone that this grocer had was a mere 750-pound cheese, and not even Italian.
LoFrisco was disappointed, but the need for a 1,000-pound Italian cheese had been awoken, and would not surrender meekly. LoFrisco searched the internet for his quarry before finally hitting on an Italian food emporium that had the sought-after 1,000-pound provolone. The owner of the emporium even offered to let LoFrisco make the very first cut. The only obstacle that LoFrisco would have to overcome was the 460 miles between him and the sweet, sweet cheese.
LoFrisco and his son saddled up and drove the seven hours north. They were greeted by the owner of the emporium and the local media, who were in awe of LoFrisco’s love for good Italian provolone, and LoFrisco was able to finally take part in the giant cheese he had missed in his childhood (with some surprising difficulty, though; LoFrisco described the cheese as very hard).
LoFrisco and son returned home with some of the monstrous cheese and a story that LoFrisco plans to put in the family cookbook.
Of course, despite our jokes, it wasn’t just about the cheese. “The cheese was great, but I didn’t wait 70 years and drive seven hours to get a piece of cheese,” LoFrisco said. “I did it to relive a memory.”
Daniel Susco is a native of the Dayton-Cincinnati area, and has written on a multitude of subjects. He can discuss Shakespeare, expound on Classical Mythology, and even make witty jokes about Pliny the Elder (More like “Pliny the Rounder,” right?). In his free time, Daniel enjoys reading, cooking, woodworking, and long walks on the beach (just kidding – sunburn is no joke). See more articles by Daniel.