A genuine Toma cheese should be made only in the old ‘artigianale’ way. In other words, by the very hands of the farmer who overlooks the grazing and milking of his own animals on the Alpine slopes in summer and in the stables during the cold season. Yes. It still exists here in the Valle d’ Aosta.
Like many others, it is the way the Duclos family in Gignod (Aosta) makes a living. They produce Fontina and Toma cheese, but also lot of other milk product. In the counter of their shop you find also: Mozzarella, Tomini cheese, Blue black cheese, Ricotta, Stracchino, Crema stracchino, Whole milk, La brossa (creme of liquid ricotta used as a type of bechamel) Butter, Cream butter, Pannacotta and Yoghurt. They are all home made by father, wife, sons and daugher in law. Lorenzo Duclos father and founder of the business shows an amazing cellar where the cheeses are dried and aged. His wife Flavia Sonsini demonstrates all the products she has in the counter of her small shop and the son Christian Duclos shows me with passion the impressive production facilities and his daily activities. They start already at 4 o’clock in the morning. “It is hard work” Christian admits, “but also very fulfilling.” After seeing how they make the cheese, I took a walk to the stables where I could witness the cows chewing their hay. It is not possible for them grazing outside, since there is still a lot of snow on the mountains.
The ‘Chez Duclos’ milk products are very pure, genuine and of high quality. I had to taste it myself, of course. I got this address from the vender of ‘cibo di strada’ sandwiches in the city of Aosta, who uses their products. An excellent suggestion!
Address: Chez Duclos, Fraz. Petit Quart, Gignod (Aosta) firstname.lastname@example.org