Colle Ostrense farm and dairy

by admin on 13/11/2009

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This family run farm was started in 1972 when the Pittalis family came from Sardinia and bought 3 farms from old farmers when most people were moving from the countryside to the cities. We were shown around the farm by Mrs. Piittalis who let us enter a big building with lots of sheep inside. Having scaled one of the enclosures inside the building, she came back holding a lamb in her arms. Since the sheep were inside enclosures and obviously not used to visitors, they were constantly moving around during our visit. After having been to the large building, we were allowed to enter another one where just a few sheep and chickens seemed to live a really tranquil life. Finally, we were shown their goats which lived outside in their own enclosure, while a small dog followed us wherever we went. We also had a look at their farmhouse dairy and their farm shop where we could buy delicious dairy products.

The animals
The farm has about 500 sheep from a race called Sarda known for its high milk production and the excellent quality of the lamb’s meat. Besides, they have about 30 goats, which they keep for the milk.

The sheep stayed inside during our stay, but usually they are free to enter and exit according to their wishes. However, they are kept inside in bad weather.

The harvests
The farm is growing the following types of forage for the animals:

  • oats
  • maize
  • alfalfa
  • wheat

The cultivated area extends to 100 hectares are they are also renting 10 hectares.

The dairy
They are producing sheep’s and goat’s cheese together with cow’s cheese with milk they are buying from nearby farms.

There are lots and lots of regulations for dairies and twice monthly inspectors are coming to check that the regulations are followed.

Children from local schools are allowed to come in order to watch cheesemaking and milking of the animals. If I heard correctly, the last one made a great impression on the children and it seems like they are happy letting someone else do it.

In addition to goat’s and the sheep’s cheese, they are also producing

  • ricotta cheese
  • mozzarella cheese
  • yogurt
  • fresh dairy products

Other products include

  • fresh meat
  • flour
  • a flat bread from Sardinia called carasau

Tasting of cold cuts, cheeses and bread are provided for minimum 2 persons at a time. Regarding tasting, I can attest to the quality of their products having been treated to a delicious meal of cold cuts and cheeses together with Sardinian flat bread.

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