Country of originGreece
Source of milksheep
Aging time5–12 months
CertificationPDO 2001

Graviera (Greek: γραβιέρα [ɣraˈvʝera]) is a cheese from Greece produced in various parts of Greece, the main of which are Crete, Lesbos, Naxos and Amfilochia. It resembles gruyère, a Swiss cheese from whose name "graviera" is derived.[1]

Graviera is Greece's second most popular cheese after feta. Made in wheels, the rind of the hard cheese is marked with the characteristic crisscross pattern of its draining cloth. There are various types of graviera produced in Greece. Graviera of Crete is made from sheep's milk and ripened for at least five months.[2] It is slightly sweet, with a pleasant burnt caramel flavor. The graviera of Naxos, in contrast, is mostly made of cow's milk (80–100%).

Graviera can be sliced and eaten, fried as saganaki and eaten as a snack, grated and served over pasta dishes, baked in a casserole[3] or used in salads (in cubes or shavings). It is widely available outside Greece, where it can be purchased at large grocery stores, Greek or ethnic markets, and specialty cheese shops, as well as online. Gruyère can be used as a substitute, but graviera is homier.[4]

See also


  1. ^ Papademas, P., and Bintsis, T. Global Cheesemaking Technology: Cheese Quality and Characteristics, John Wiley & Sons, 2017. p. 220.
  2. ^ Donnelly, Catherine, ed. (25 October 2016). The Oxford Companion to Cheese. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-933090-4.
  3. ^ "Graviera from Crete". Archived from the original on 2017-01-17. Retrieved 2013-08-12.
  4. ^ Hoffman, Susanna. 2004. The Olive and the Caper; Adventures in Greek Cooking. Workman Publishing. ISBN 978-1563058486. p. 28.