33025 Ovaro UD, Italy
Italian Cheese-Makers FestivalEvery summer, in the shadow of Carnia’s Monte Zoncolan, the town of Ovaro hosts a festival called Mondo delle Malghe. Meaning “world of the malghe,” this festival celebrates the small-scale dairy farms high up in the mountains of northern Italy where herdsman take their cattle for the summer months. Cheese-tasting is naturally the highlight of the festival: a sampler plate may include formaggio di malga, formaggio salato (salted cheese), formaggio alle erbe (herbed cheese), ricotta (both fresh and smoked), and formadi frant (a golden hued cheese made from mixing cheeses of varying stages of maturation). Other vendors dish up plates of goulasch, sausages, gnocchi di zucca (butternut squash dumplings), frico (cheese and potato pancakes), and cjarsòns (pasta with a sweet-savory filling). In addition, malgari (herdsmen) demonstrate cheese production and take visitors on excursions to nearby malghe.