October 29, 2021

Bucket List: Fall Food Festivals in Italy

Italy is synonymous with great food and wine so it’s not surprising that there are dozens of …

By Corinne Van Houten

Tuscany

Italy

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Photo Source: Daily Addict

Italy is synonymous with great food and wine so it’s not surprising that there are dozens of local festivals celebrating both, especially in the fall, the traditional season for celebrating the harvest. From truffles to chocolate, nougat to rice Italy’s rich culinary traditions provide a feast for the traveler.

During the months of October and November the International White Truffle Fair takes place in the city of Alba in Piedmont, Italy.

Photo Source: Pelorus

The truffle is a fungi that grows underground beneath oak or hazelnut trees. Difficult to find, truffle hunters use dogs and pigs that have been especially trained to search for the tubers at the roots of these trees. Although some truffles can be cultivated that is not the case for the white truffle and, unlike the more common black truffle, the white truffle cannot be frozen so its shelf life is incredibly short – around ten days. Its price is also considerably higher. In a 2014 article on truffles in the Atlantic magazine, Ryan Jacobs writes that “in 2010 Macau casino tycoon Stanley Ho spent $330,000 on two pieces [of white truffle] that weighed 2.87 pounds.”

Photo Source: Adams And Adams

You can taste this extravagant delicacy when you attend the white truffle market where vendors sell everything from the truffle itself to products involving the truffle such as olive oils and pastas. Restaurants focusing on the “tartufo bianco d’Alba,” wine tasting events, cooking classes and special dinners with top chefs are just some of the events accompanying the fair.

While you’re in Tuscany don’t miss the Boccaccesca Food and Wine Festival in the medieval town of Certaldo Alto which takes place in October. Local Tuscan wines such as Chianti Classico or Brunello di Montalcino are available for tasting during the festival’s three days as well as local products – specialty breads, charcuterie, cheese, ribolitta and game dishes.

Photo Source: Dream Discover Italia

Finally, indulge your sweet tooth by a visit to Umbria where the Eurochocolate Festival runs in Perugia in October. From Perugina’s signature “Baci” (chocolate kisses) to hot chocolate and chocolate kebabs, you will find all sorts of products to tickle your sugar cravings.

These are just three of the many festivals that take place in Italy. Some other festivals include the famous Grape Festival in Marino, the Rice Festival in Isola della Scala, and the Nougat Festival in Cremona. Most of these festivals are situated in picturesque Italian towns, enhancing your enjoyment of the food and wine while surrounded by medieval and Renaissance charm.


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