Fontina originated in Italy in 1477 in the mountainous Val d’Aosta region near the Swiss border. It was named Fontina d?Aosta for Mont Fontin and the nearby village of Fontinaz. Fontina is considered one of the most versatile cheeses in the world because it is excellent as both a table cheese and a cooking cheese. Fontina has been copied often, with the most notable styles being Italian, Swedish and Danish. Today, Wisconsin cheesemakers produce all three. The Italian style has a smooth, supple texture with tiny holes, a brown coating and a flavor that is mild, earthy and buttery. The Swedish variety is slightly tart and nutty yet has a mild earthy flavor that runs mellow to sharp depending on age. Danish Fontina is also slightly tart and nutty with a mild earthy flavor that ranges from mellow to sharp depending on age.
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