26.07.2012 - 18.08.2012
Valle d'Aosta, July 26 to August 18, 2012 – A celebration of sounds, scents and tastes: fontina cheese!
The Region of Valle d’Aosta, in collaboration with Regional Association of Cultivators (AREV), have organized an original iniziative, entitled in French "Alpages Ouvertes," which wil take place throughout this small region from July 26 to August 18.
The festival will feature itineraries in discovery of mountain cultivation, from baou to paillé (from the cowshed to the bar). Visitors will journey from old-fashioned, cowsheds with their low ceilings, tiny doors and narrow troughs to uber-modern milking machines that provide a calm environment for the cows from which the optimum milk for fontina cheese derives.
Afterward, they can visit the long and low cowsheds of the higher altitudes, where the roofs are built to support the heavy weight of continuous snow. They are architecturally simple yet fascinating. Still, what are most striking are the picturesque chalets that sit on pastures framed by mountain peaks.
Visitors will fitness from the cows’ perspective their 100 days of pasturing at altitude in order to produce the best Fontina!
And here, the milking machine can be run either by hand or mechanically, and works the milk raw, on-site, and without the addition of synthetic ferments. “Open Alps” was conceived in 2000 by AREV with goal of introducing outsiders to the Alpine environment, as well as making the connection to how important biodiversity and its preservation are for both nature and its inhabitants. It is especially important for the cultivators and their unique productions in this beautiful yet marginal region.
Below, the programme dates and locations for these particular itineraries:
July 26, 2012 – Alpeggio Arpeyssau – Bionaz
July 28, 2012 – Alpeggio La Mandaz – Valtournenche
August 6, 2012 – Alpeggio Djouan – Valsavarenche
August 11, 2012 – Alpeggio Arp Vieille – Valgrisenche
August 14, 2012 – Alpeggio Champlong – Verrayes
August 18, 2012 – Alpeggio Les Reches – Nus