Visit to the La Pâle by Claude Luisier

Val d'Illiez alpage cheese

The fascination with alpage cheeses is often found at a crossroads between the exquisite taste of cheese and the wonder at the stunning landscapes that accompany his production. This article takes you to The alp of La Pâle , In the Val d'Illiez. For an immersion in the fascinating world of making alp raclette cheese. In the company of Serge Mariétan, a passionate producer. We explore the very essence of what makes pasty cheeses so special. Is it the cheese itself or the idyllic setting in which it is produced that captivates the most? Join us on this taste and visual journey to discover the secrets of the perfect raclette.

The exceptional setting of the La Pâle pasture

Autumn at the La Pâle mountain pastors reveals a show of colors and natural beauty that will take your breath away. The panoramic this place offers is a real gift for the eyes. With a breathtaking view of the Fribourg Alps, the Moléson, and even the famous Château de Chillon bathing in Lake Geneva. Serge Mariétan himself is full of praise for the beauty of these places. He claims that the landscape plays a crucial role in the exceptional quality of the raclette cheese produced. The cows, raised in this beautiful setting, benefit from a healthy and peaceful environment. This is undoubtedly reflected in the quality of their milk.

Meeting with Serge Mariétan and his alpage cheese

Serge Mariétan, with whom we have the honor of spending this day, is a real master in the art of making alp raclette cheese. He stressed the importance of harmony between the landscape and the production process. According to him, the secret lies in the delicate balance between a preserved natural environment and a know-how passed down from generation to generation. This symbiosis not only creates a raclette cheese of a superior quality but also tells the story of a passion and a tradition perpetuated in the heart of the Val d'Illiez.

The making of alpage cheese: ancestral know-how

The magic of alpage raclette cheese lies in its manufacturing process, an art that is passed down from generation to generation. Serge Mariétan guides us through the crucial stages of this process. From the milking of cows in the early morning, when the day rises in the Alps, to the ripening of the cheese in specially designed cellar areas. The milk harvested is of exceptional quality, thanks to a natural diet of the cows, composed of alpine herbs rich in herbs. This quality is found in every piece of cheese. Offering a rich and complex flavor that is a reflection of the unique terroir of La Pâle.

The role of climate and local biodiversity is fundamental. Climate variations influence not only grazing but also the texture and taste of cheese. The manufacture of cheese is therefore a constant dialogue with nature, where observation and adaptation are key. Each alpage cheese tells a different story, an footprint of the time and place where it was created. It is this story that Serge and his team strive to preserve and promote. Respecting natural circles and traditional refining methods.

The impact of climate and terroir on cheese

The Val d'Illiez, thanks to its particular climatic conditions and its rich soil, plays a preponderant role in the quality of the cheese produced with the pasty of La Pâle. In addition, Serge explains how variations in temperature, exposure to the sun, and the composition of the soil directly affect the quality of the milk and, by extension, that of the cheese. As a result, these natural elements give cheese unique characteristics, impossible to reproduce elsewhere. In addition, the rigorous selection of cows, the management of pastures and the precise moment of milking are all factors that influence the final aromatic profile of the cheese. From then on, it becomes obvious that every detail counts in the quest for cheese excellence. Thus stressing the crucial importance of the natural environment and artisan know-how.

This interplay between terroir, climate and human know-how is what makes alp cheese so special. Serge and his team work in harmony with the environment to ensure that each cheese reflects the richness and diversity of the alpian landscape. The result is a product that does not just nourish the body, but also touches the soul, evoking the place and traditions that saw it born.

La Pâle cheese: between tradition and innovation

In accordance with tradition, the La Pâle pasty also embraces innovation to improve the quality of its cheeses. Serge shares how technical advances and new agricultural practices integrate harmoniously with ancestral methods. This merger ensures the durability of production while improving the quality of the cheese.

The refining of cheese represents another crucial area where tradition and innovation come together harmoniously. Indeed, refining techniques have been considerably refined over time. This allows each cheese to fully develop its unique character. Consequently, the ripening cellar, a privileged place where the cheese rests and matured, becomes the final theater of this metamorphosis. This is precisely where the act of transforming milk into an exceptional cheese is played out. Thus, this crucial step underlines the importance of patience and expertise in creating a cheese that is distinguished not only by its quality but also by its authenticity. This is where the art of the cheese-making takes on its full dimension. In the careful follow-up and the patience required for each cheese to achieve its perfection.


The visit to the La Pâle alp and the meeting with Serge Mariétan allowed us to dive into the fascinating world of alpage cheese. Where the landscape, know-how and passion meet to create an exceptional product. The quality of the alpage cheese is not limited to its flavor. It is also a reflection of an ecosystem, a culture and a history that deserve to be preserved and celebrated.

We invite you to discover for yourself the magic of alpage cheese by visiting our Shop , Where you'll find a selection of authentic cheeses, as well as stories to enrich your dining experience. Let yourself be transported by the unique flavors of Val d'Illiez and share with us your passion for quality Swiss cheese.

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