Tuesday, November 22, 2011

A romantic weekend for some truffle hunting!

view from our room
The weekend right before Halloween Josh and I went down to the famous Piemonte region (Piedmont) to stay in a small medieval town called Moncalvo. We were lucky enough to get set up with a beautiful country chic room at a B&B within walking distance of the town. When we looked out of our room all you could see were fall colors and vineyards. It was so beautiful! The colors were peaking, and it was a little foggy the whole weekend. It seemed appropriate since it was almost Halloween and the fog made it feel like we were in Sleepy Hollow. I LOVE fall!! It's my favorite season.
Fall colors in the vines

We were lucky to be going to Moncalvo on that particular weekend. The famous truffle festivals were happening in the area so we had to experience them first hand. Truffles are extremely expensive and are found by using dogs or pigs trained to find them. They are essentially an underground mushroom and Piemonte is famous for them. Black truffles are very common so they are less expensive than the white. The only way I can describe the taste (for those of you who have never tried truffle) is that they taste like mushrooms on steroids. It’s a very potent mushroom flavor, not much truffle is needed in a meal. When cooking with truffle, it is usually used as an accent flavor or a garnish shaved over the final presentation. Although, one of my favorite dishes is Mezzaluna (half-moon pasta similar to ravioli) filled with ricotta and truffle, then covered with a white sauce and truffle shavings. OMG…. Its sooooo good!! It makes me hungry just thinking about it.


White and Black truffles

Black Truffles

we also found this marble Ferrari at the Alba Festival
We stopped by Alba to check out the truffle festival there and had the opportunity to try some wine and buy some truffle products. We really enjoyed it! This would be a fun event to attend with a group of friends. You can enjoy the vendors products while sipping on some wine, and even have some lunch. There are also vendors selling cheeses and meats- some people bought cheese and meat, along with some crackers, a bottle of wine and just had a little picnic at the festival.

a DELICIOUS halloween cookie- it matched the scenery

That same day we also drove around to some of the old hill towns in Piemonte including Neive (an adorable little town about 10 minutes from Alba), Barbaresco (they are also famous for making Barbaresco wine), and Barolo (famous for Barolo wine). After running around all day we were ready to sit in our B&B room and just relax, so we ordered a pizza and opened a bottle of wine we purchased that day. We hung out, ate pizza, drank wine, and played games. It was a great night! Is that a sign that we’re getting old…? J

a friendly cat we found in Neive



Barbaresco had some strange statues...
I like to mimic statues

a little foggy, but here is a view of Barolo from the top of the hill


our view at night

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