Hazelnuts are a native tree from the region of Piedmont in the North Western Alps of Italy. The fruit from this native variety of hazelnut is prized for its rounded shape and high yield of nut to shell. This is about 45-50%. Piedmont Hazelnuts are known for their aroma and flavour, which does not deminish when they are roasted. Mattia Pariani oversees the cultivation and harvest of the nuts that his company Pariani make into paste, oil and sell as whole roasted nuts and as flour. His growers are close to the border of France and the trees are only planted on the south facing hills to absorb as much sun as possible. His invention of an infrared toasting machine that results in perfect golden toasting of these hazelnuts through out each very small batch, is a first.
These hazelnuts are particularly sort after in the confectionary industry for there texture and shape. Used in confectionary making since the early 1800's in this area of Italy it was also the first hazelnut to be used for Gianduja or hazelnut chocolate paste later to be known as everyone's favourite, Nutella.