Frangelico (a brand of noisette) is produced in the Piedmont region of northern Italy, and its origins date back more than 300 years to the presence of early Christian monks living in the hills of the area. Their skills in fine food and drink would have included the art of distilling, especially the use of the wild hazelnuts and other local ingredients to create a liqueur on which Frangelico is based today. Frangelicos irresistible hazelnut taste starts with some very special hazelnuts. They even have their own name – Tonda Gentile – and are a speciality of the northern Italian region of Piedmont where Frangelico is produced. Tonda Gentile hazelnuts are known for being bigger, plumper and more uniform, with a skin that sheds easily, allowing for toasting without a bitter taste. Their sweet flavor is the reason they are so sought after by internationally known confectionery brands, Ferrero Rocher and Nutella, as well as by Frangelico. Frangelico buys around 38 tons of Tonda Gentile hazelnuts a year – all grown in the Langhe, an area of rural hills and picturesque villages in southern Piedmont which provides the perfect climate and soil. Once toasted and distilled with alcohol, then infused with cocoa, coffee, vanilla berries and other natural flavours, those hazelnuts are miraculously transformed into 4,500,000 bottles of Frangelico for enjoyment around the world, as well as in their native Italy. So special is the Tonda Gentile Delle Langhe hazelnut that it is the first product of the Piedmont region to hold a protected status – equivalent to DOC or Appellation Contrôlée wine classification.