The Alta Langa is one of the three areas in which the Langhe territory can be divided, located between the provinces of Cuneo and Asti, near Monferrato and Roero, and consisting of an extensive hilly system defined by the course of the Tanaro rivers, Belbo, Bormida di Millesimo and Bormida di Spigno.
The hills of the Alta Langa, rich in woods, give rise to numerous products such as the delicious Piedmont PGI hazelnuts, considered by users to be the best in the world; delicate cheeses, an integral part of the history and traditions of the Langhe; mushrooms, truffles of exceptional quality; inimitable taste honeys and great wines.
There, where the hazel groves take the place of the vineyards, the panoramic and romantic hills of the Alta Langa begin.
Here the view is lost between valleys and pastures, fields and woods, rows of Dolcetto and Moscato, quiet villages, roads with little traffic, ideal for cycling and trekking routes, in search of places of taste, tradition and culture.
Many of the works by Cesare Pavese and Beppe Fenoglio have been set on these same hills. The latter, in particular, has made Alta Langa, its history and its people protagonists of novels and stories. The “Malora” remains engraved in everyone’s memory, but the tenacity of the people here has managed over the decades to defeat it and create widespread well-being, thanks above all to its main product which is hazelnut.
Gentle Round hazelnuts from Piedmont are grown everywhere in Alta Langa, PGI since 1993, made famous by the Ferrero di Alba products and appreciated for their consistency, delicate flavour, sweetness, intense and persistent aroma, which enhances the perception of stone fruit, excellent peel ability, good yield and long shelf life.
Noble fruit, refined, of great excellence, the “Tonda Gentile” is not only a protagonist in the Piedmontese elite pastry, but is also used by great chefs in savoury cuisine, in combination with traditional dishes such as roast or in more daring combinations with pasta, cheeses and salami.
In Cortemilia, to find out all about hazelnuts, you can turn to the Brotherhood of the Gentle Round hazelnut, founded in 2000, which makes culture and organizes events to enhance and promote this fruit.
Among the many excellent cheeses produced in Alta Langa there are very renowned sheep’s cheeses, perfectly adapted to the pastures of the Alta Langa where herbs and flowers spontaneously grow which give the milk an inimitable taste and aroma. The paste is moist and soft, without holes and ivory white in the young cheese, more compact and scaly, golden in the mature one.
The area also stands out for its renowned wine production: famous all over the world are the wines, produced by the cellars located in the Langa territories, white, red and dessert or the Alta Langa Brut, symbol of Italian sparkling wine.
Equally famous are the Alba White Truffle, for which every year a specially dedicated fair is held in the locality of the same name which attracts many visitors also from across the border and which has now become the focus of tourism in this area, and the Black Summer Truffle of the area. ‘Alta Langa.