Etivaz cheesemakers only source their milk from local herds that feed on the Canton's pastures. Only raw milk is used, so the delicate flavor of this rare milk can carry over to the final moment when the cheese is ready to be eaten. Once the milk is curded and drained, it is gently cooked over a wood fire. Once the curd is cooked, the cheese is covered in brine for twenty-four hours, then the rind is again salted and brushed. Much like the milk, the salt applied is also harvested locally. Aged for approximately seven months, the wheels are tested weekly to judge their maturation and growth.
Switzerland took the legal steps to use the AOC label on their wines and other agricultural products in 1997, but Etivaz is the first cheese to receive this honor. Registered with the Swiss government in 2000, Etivas is a name-controlled gift of nature and craftsmanship that must be tried by any true connoisseur. Slightly pungent, wonderfully fruity, with a lingering flavor of hazelnuts and wild herbs, this cheese is a marvel of human determination using the best of what nature offers.