Maaaa-rvelous goat cheese

February 12, 2010 / Food & Wine
Vesime, Piemonte
robbiola1Feeling like everyone is out to get your goat? Well, you’ve seen nothing yet! It’s time to take a drive into the heart of the Alta Langa of Piemonte, where the Barbera and Nebbiolo vineyards give way to the jagged terrain and hilly pastures of formaggio di capra country! It’s here that Robiola di Roccaverano DOP* is at home.

At Agriturismo La Luna Buona, outside of the village of Vesime, Olivia Fresia and her husband Massimo have restored an ancient cascina, robbiola2built barns for over five hundred goats and are making some of the finest organic-certified DOP Robiola in the region.

Olivia and Massimo’s goats are happy and relaxed. They eat grass and herbs from the neighboring fields or hay brought down from Roccaverano, in accordance with the DOP requirements. The raw milk is constantly monitored for purity. The end product is sublime in its simplicity and elegance.

A sure sign of Olivia’s passion: on a short vacation at the French Riviera, Olivia said to her husband, “You know, this is nice, but why don’t we just go to Burgundy and buy some more goats?” Which is exactly what they did. Two hundred of them, to be exact.

Another example of Piemonte at its finest.

*DOP stands for Denominazione di Origine Protetta (Protected Designation of Origin)


by Diana Baur

Innkeeper, Potter, Writer. Her incredible B&B in Piemonte is at Also, read her blog at

10 Responses to “Maaaa-rvelous goat cheese”

  1. Stef Smulders

    I love goats and want to return as one in my next life. Not in The Netherlands (my native country) though, as they are now killing thousands and thousands of them to fight an outbreakof Q-fever (ever heard of it?). Please let me return as one of Olivia and Maaasimo’s!

  2. Peggy Corrao

    Oh how absolutely fabulous, both the content and the presentation! I love goats and Olivia and Massimo sound divine! Can’t wait to go back!!

  3. Michael Yaccino

    Over the ear of the capra is what looks like a sprig of spearment. My grandfather had a herd of over 200 goats, and grandpa always had a sprig of spearment over his ear.

  4. davi mondt lowman

    ciao, diana!
    one of these days, i’m going to bring my tour group to piemonte!

  5. Michael, that thing that looks like a leaf is the goat’s DOP earring :)

    Davi, I hope you do! It’s really a lovely place.

    Ele, come on up! Anytime!

    Dana, right, these cheeses are right up there with our ravioli plin!

    Peggy, it is a special place and they are definitely special people. Honest and passionate.

    Barbara and Rosemary, now if I could only eat all of it without it going directly to my hips…. then it would be perfect!!

  6. Grazie Diana, thank you so much for profiling such an amazing agriturismo. I have been looking for a place to bring my food and wine tour groups to taste Roccaverano, and it looks like we found just the place. As a matter of fact, my Italian counterpart has a meeting with La Luna Buona on Wednesday. Thank you again so much for your lovely article. I can’t wait to taste it, hopefully on tour in March!


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