Piedmont 1994

Santuario di San Magno

Santuario di San Magno

This image sets the stage for our visit to the region surrounding Castelmagno. We came upon Santuario di San Magno, in the Valle Grana as we drove up and up and up into the alps of Castelmagno where we were surrounded by heavy fog and cool air that gave a mystical feel to the place, no one was around it was very serene and quiet.

La Poiania Castelmagno

La Poiania Castelmagno

This is the sign that greeted us when we visited cooperativa agricola “La Poiana” a cooperative producer of Castelmagno. The mountainous region and the cool, damp air made this a perfect environment for aging this incredible cheese.

 

 

Castelmagno cave

Castelmagno cave

We soon found ourselves in the dark, damp caves tasting wheel after wheel of this famous cheese. We were amused by the innovative and unpretentious use of tape to keep a cracking wheel together (lower center of the photo).

 

 

Piedmont cave

Further along in our trip, we visited caves that were aging other regional cheeses Bra and Raschera.

 

Branding Raschera cheese

Branding Raschera

Back in the office we witnessed the branding that is given to each cheese by hand.

 

Mountain switchback

Mountain switchback

On our way back from visiting the cheese caves and on our way to meet up with Matteo to buy some truffles, we got a bit lost and ended up heading down the most incredible switchback. Great views and fun (albeit slow) driving but unfortunately no way to turn around.

 

 

 

 

Buying truffles with Matteo

Buying truffles with Matteo

We arrived a bit late at Matteo’s restaurant but settled right in to pick the white Alba truffles we would take back with us to Boston.

 

house-with-stone-roofAs we open this travelogue with a photo showing the natural and refined architectural beauty of the region, so we close with a photo of the more rustic architectural beauty of the region.