In a fresco of the Issogne castle, feudal residence in the lower Aosta Valley, the oldest visual evidence of the existence of fontina is showed in a painting, dating back to the late fifteenth century, representing a shop counter with a pile of cheeses, which look exactly the same as the fontina still produced today.
The term "fontina" appeared for the first time in a document of 1270, written in Latin, but the name is used as a toponym to identify a piece of land. The name has been used, since 1700, to designate the cheese in manuscripts, books, public records and inventories; some say the name could have been derived from the Fontìn mountain or from the village named fontinaz or even from a family name. From that moment onwards, however, this name has been used in everyday language to indicate this famous and unique cheese.
* For further information, you can refer to the first six chapters of the book that you find online.
1. Issogne Castle Fresco of around the year 1480 representing a food products store. On the right, moulds almost identical to the current fontina ones can be seen.
2. Reproduced here is the document in which, in 1270, the Vacherino cheese was mentioned for the first time. In the same document, we find the patronym and toponym Fontìnes (Peronimus de Fontìnes and the fields or the Fontìnes village)
ADVICE FOR ALL!
Per non restare mai senza la Fontina DOP provate ad usare Fetta Perfetta!!
Discover the true recipe of Aosta Valley's fondue!
To prepare the fondue, you need good fontina PDO, seasoned to perfection, milk and fresh eggs...