Born in 1984, Cristina graduated from the University of Gastronomic Sciences in Pollenzo. After years of experience in the restaurant, hospitality and tourism sector, she decided to take on the family farm: 12 hectares of hazel orchards in Castino (CN), in the heart of the hills of the Alta Langa.

Dario was born in 1984 too, and he attended the prestigious “Istituto Umberto I” school of vinegrowing and winemaking in Alba, qualifying in 2004 as a Specialist Agricultural Technician. After working for a short time as a winemaker in a local cellar, in 2008 he decided to follow in his grandfather’s footsteps as a hazelnut grower. He learn the trade by working on a very well-known local hazelnut farm before going into partnership with his uncle and buying his own land. Additions have been made to the property year on year, and it now extends over around 20 hectares (50 acres) of hazel orchards.

The business also has the support of Cristina’s father, Lorenzo, who was an executive in leading Italian multinationals for more than 40 years.

Cascina Fontane – Atelier della Nocciola came about in 2016 as a result of an almost chance encounter between Cristina and Dario. Bringing together their different work experiences, they set out to achieve excellence by growing PGI-status Piemonte hazelnuts to the highest standards in their orchards and transforming them into the kind of genuine, high quality products that only small artisanal Italian farms are capable of guaranteeing.