Hazelnut cultivation is widely and historically widespread throughout the Prenestino area that, due to its position, physical characteristics of the land and climatic conditions, is particularly suited to the production of this fruit.
The territory of Labico has always been dedicated to the production of hazelnuts. The Statute of Lugnano (ancient name of the village) already in the 17th century mentioned the cultivation of hazelnuts and the presence of a “Nocchieto della Corte”.
The nearby city of Palestrina itself must have been suited in the past to the cultivation of hazelnuts. Here the origins of the crop are documented starting from the 60s when, on the impulse of the Giordani farm, most of the population began to plant hazelnut trees.
However, it seems that most of the hazelnut trees have been planted on the territories of the Prenestini Hills since 1950, by small and large landowners who came to establish a cooperative in 1977. In the Eighties, local producers began to focus on improving production and quality, also investing in manual harvesting of the product. Nowadays, the phases of cultivation, harvesting and processing are carried out mainly by mechanical means, without however affecting its excellent organoleptic qualities. The most widely cultivated varieties are the “Tonda Gentile Romana” and the “Nocchione”.
After harvesting, the product is cleaned and sold in shell, shelled or roasted. It can be consumed as a snack or used as a base for local confectionery, such as “Tozzetti” and “Pangiallo”
The Tonda Gentile Romana Hazelnut from the Prenestine Hills, with its characteristic spherical shape and slightly pointed apex, has a brown hazelnut colour and intense hazelnut aroma. The taste is sweet with a slightly salty note. Good crunchiness, chewiness and aromatic persistence.