The mozzarella at Rocco's Wood Fired Pizza (5433 Transit Road, Clarence, 247-5272) gets made fresh every day, but it's not just used for pizzas.
While still soft, massaged cheese curd is pulled into a disc and topped with a dollop of mascarpone cheese that's been thinned with heavy cream and fortified with more shredded mozzarella. Then the disc's edges are pinched together, and you have burrata: fresh cheese stuffed with cheese.
"It's a total dairy experience," said Chef Rob Perrott, who makes the burrata. "The filling is completely unseasoned, because the mozzarella has its own saltiness."
At Rocco's, burrata is offered as an appetizer ($12.95), quartered and plated with an assortment of edible enticements so the customer can mix and match. "It's an ever-evolving thing as far as what you serve with it," Perrott said. To accentuate its creamy notes, that can include accents like wildflower honey, balsamic vinegar reduction, fruits, nuts, vegetable preparations, bread and fresh herbs. A recent version featured purple grapes, arugula and pine nuts.
"People are loving it," said Perrott. "It's a keeper."
Andrew Z. Galarneau