Fontina PDO

Production Area

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Fontina PDO is a semi-cooked cheese, obtained from whole cow’s milk produced by Valdostana cattle breeds (Pezzata Rossa, Pezzata Nera and Castana).

Production Method

Whole or raw milk is used for production and must be processed within a few hours from milking. The milk, brought to a maximum temperature of 36°C, is curdled with calf rennet. The curd is broken until the grains are the size of corn kernels, after which it is reheated for about half an hour until it reaches a temperature of 48°C, stimulating the purging of the whey. At the end of this stage it is left to rest for 10 minutes, after which it is placed in molds containing the casein marker showing the progressive product number; it is then pressed for around 12 hours while being constantly turned. Before the last turn, the identifying mark of the Consorzio Tutela Fontina (CTF) – Fontina Protection Consortium - which also indicates the producer’s ID code, is imprinted on one of the flat faces of the wheel. The cheese is then salted and ripened in cool, damp natural caves for at least three months.

Appearance and Flavour

Fontina PDO has a thin and compact rind with a brown colour that varies in intensity depending on the age of the cheese. The semi-cooked cheese is soft and elastic, with characteristic eyes scattered throughout; it is rich on the palate, with a colour ranging from ivory to a more-or-less intense straw yellow. Its flavour is sweet and delicate.

Production Area

The production area of Fontina PDO is within the territory of the autonomous region of Valle d’Aosta.


In historical documents on the Valle d’Aosta, the name “fontina” recurs frequently. Since the mid-1200s there is evidence of the De Funtina family and 100 years later we can read about the De Fontines. There is also much documentation on the use of the name for indicating different places, such as fields, land and villages. The use of the name “Fontina” when referring to cheese gradually increases in the archives; first as a substitute for vacherinus, combined with seras and then, from the XVIII century on, it is unmistakably used for the characteristic cheese. For many centuries Fontina was produced where it was possible to obtain large quantities of milk; in the highlands. During the winter most of the local families only possessed a few cows. It was only at the beginning of the XIX century that dairies were built and milk for processing was then pooled with a cooperative spirit. Fontina PDO is an offspring of the mountains and took its name from the noble houses and recurring toponyms of the Valle d’Aosta.


Fontina PDO keeps well in humid environments of 10-12°C and should be placed on wooden slats. In the fridge it should be kept in food bags in the least cold compartment, with the cut end covered in foil; the cheese should be taken out of the fridge about one hour prior to consumption. It may be used as a table cheese or as an ingredient in other dishes. Without doubt, the most well-known dish with Fontina PDO is the Valdostana fondue. It is often used as an ingredient in the preparation of crostini, appetizers and first courses, such as polenta, gnocchi, stuffed pancakes, as well as being eaten on its own as a simple snack. It pairs well with light white, rosé and red wines.


The product is marketed as Fontina PDO. It is sold year-round in whole forms, large pieces, and pre-packed slices.

Distinctive Features

During the first month of ripening, Fontina PDO is turned every day, alternating between one day of salting and one day of brushing; these processes promote the development of Fontina PDO’s characteristic rind.



Az. Agr. D.&D. di Duclos Lorenzo

Fz. Petit Quart, 2/A
Tel: 016556238

Balicco Giuseppe

Fz. Saquignod, 18
Tel: 0165770030

Bianquin Edy

Fz. Tarensan
Tel: 016553124

Bredy Bruno

Fz. Variney Savin, 30
Tel: 016556068

Cas. Art. Variney di Duclos Eliseo

Fz. Petit Quart, 2/A
Tel: 0165256880

Cas. Vallet Pietro e Figli & C. s.n.c.

Loc. La Balma, 18
Tel: 0125807347

Cerisey Cornelio

Fz. Montjoux, 34
Tel: 016556116

Champagne soc. Coop.

Fraz. Champagne
Tel: 016646360

Coop. Evancon Soc. Coop.

Fraz. Glair
Tel: 0125966261

Coop. Latte Chatillon

V.le Rimembranza
Tel: 016661681

Cooperativa Produttori Latte e Fontina

Loc. Croix-Noire, 10
Tel: 016535714

Dalbard Paolo

Fz. Chenieres, 213
Tel: 016553413

Fognier Elio

Fz. Cort
Tel: 016646323

Fromagerie Haute Val D’Ayas

Rue Trois Villages, 1
Tel: 0125301117

Jeantet Bruno

Rue des Clementines, 17

Jotaz Gillio

Fraz. Cognein, 17
Tel: 016573425

La Borettaz di Vierin Bisson

Fraz. La Borettaz
Gressan (Ao)

Lale Lacroix Giorgio

Fz. La Croix, 9
Tel: 0165903224

Les Iles Soc. Coop Dei F.lli Volget

Loc. Chez Les Volget, 5
Tel: 0165762082

Perraillon Yves Giuseppe

Fraz. Septumian

Quendoz Elio e Pierangelo

Loc. Les Adams, 5
Tel: 0165250207

Valle del Cervino Soc. Coop.

Loc. Evette, 26
Tel: 016692132

Walser Delikatesse

Loc. Chincheré, 196
Tel: 0125344162


Production (kg or lt)

Turnover (mln €)

Export (mln €)

2016 3,355,034 25 6.7
2015 3,721,527 26 7.4
2014 3,761,766 26 5.7
2013 3,873,000 25 2.8
2012 3,441,654 22 2.5
2011 3,509,856 24 2.6
2010 3,584,988 25 2.7
2009 3,819,865 27 2.9
2008 4,322,146 30 -
2007 2,923,119 18 -
2006 3,734,829 23 -