In spring, the Alpine slopes awaken from their winter hibernation accompanied by the colours, scents, and products of nature. It’s the perfect time to set out to discover the unique flavours of the mountains. Therefore, we recommend you 7 food and wine itineraries that you can’t miss in the Alpine Pearls. For the uninitiated, the Alpine Pearls are an international circuit that puts together Alpine resorts committed to reducing their ecological footprint and promoting sustainable mobility.
Are you ready to discover the natural beauty of the Alps combined with the flavours of the typical local dishes? Let’s go!
1. #CHEESNIC – San Martino di Castrozza (Trentino)
The first destination is located in the heart of the Trentino Alps. Between an excursion in the woods and a via ferrata, #CHEESNIC awaits you in July in San Martino di Castrozza. What is it about? As you can guess, you can compose a customizable picnic at km0, and then consume it immersed in nature. The initiative, supported by restaurants and huts, allows you to buy local food and wine to compose your gourmet baskets.
Besides helping local producers, to emphasize the importance of “zero waste” you will receive a “Refill&Taste” bottle as a gift. In this way, you will be able to taste water coming from the mountain springs, easily identifiable through the app Refill, which can be downloaded on all mobile devices.
Where to sleep green: at the Hotel Isolabella Wellness. It is located in the nearby town of Fiera di Primiero, where you will find a beautiful wellness center. It uses energy from renewable sources and offers free bicycles to ride along the cycle path located right in front of the structure.
2. Earth Market – Alpe Cimbra (Trentino)
Starting from the end of May, every third Saturday of the month, you can visit the Earth Market in the main towns of Alpe Cimbra in Trentino. The market, organized by the Slow Food Community for the Agro-cultural Development of the Cimbrian Plateaus, takes place in the municipalities of Lavarone, Folgaria, Luserna, and Vigolana, all belonging to the Cimbrian Plateau. The itinerary belonging to the Alpine Pearls has been created to generate a meeting place between local producers, the inhabitants, and guests, in order to delight the palates of everyone with food derived from local products.
Where to sleep green: the Hotel du Lac, with a view of the magnificent Lavarone Lake. It is provided with columns to recharge electric vehicles, powered with renewable energy, thanks to photovoltaic panels.
3. Gourmet Cellars – Cogne (Aosta)
Are you a food and wine lover? This is your event! The Pearl of Cogne organizes the “Gourmet Cellars” tour: three days (9-11 July) immersed in nature, accompanied by the best local DOC labels. The aperitif obviously includes a degustation of some of the delicious dishes of the “Cogneintse” tradition. Soça, Favò, cured meats, and sweets are perfectly prepared by the hands of the expert chefs of the area.
Where to sleep green: at the Bellevue Hotel & SPA, a welcoming environment, with a large garden and organic vegetable garden. The cook will delight you with the cuisine entirely characterized by zero-kilometer products from the area.
4. Herb Festival – Forni di Sopra (Udine)
The essence of nature is enclosed in the properties of herbs: from cooking to pharmaceuticals and cosmetics. You can concentrate on the discovery of all these peculiarities during the magnificent Herb Festival (10-11 and 17-18 June). The program of this event consists in retracing the mountain paths guided by an expert botanist. The peculiarity is that you can walk through the paths where the apothecaries and distillers of the Serenissima Republic of Venice went in the past, in search of herbs to create their precious products among the Alpine Pearls.
Where to sleep green: at the Hotel Posta, which allows you to stay in the heart of Forni di Sopra. You can access the facility even without a car, to fully enjoy your stay in nature, thanks to the free guided activities offered by the hotel.
5. Slow Food Travel – Funes (South Tyrol)
The project has extended to South Tyrol. Starting in May, the town of Funes hosts the “Slow Food Travel” summer program. Don’t worry, there are initiatives for everyone: starting with itineraries where you will discover the properties of food and medicinal herbs, passing through cheese tastings and workshops to prepare butter and bread in the farmsteads, as well as traveling through the various trails in the South Tyrolean Alps, on foot or by bike. The organizers structure the event in order to reconcile the discovery of the territory with its local delicacies.
Where to sleep green: at the Hotel Tyrol, in the charming town of Santa Maddalena, overlooking the Odle group. Its structure, which follows the principles of bio-architecture, with a swimming pool, whirlpool, and panoramic view, will allow you to recharge your batteries.
6. International Wildflower Festival – Bohinj (Slovenia)
The Alpine Pearl Project also takes you beyond the borders of the Italian Peninsula. We are in Slovenia, more precisely in Bohinj, which organizes the “International Wildflower Festival” again this year, from the 19th of May to the 4th of June. Accompanied by the fantastic atmosphere of the homonymous lake, the landscape during this period is tinged with bright colours. The festival calendar includes various events which you can enjoy yourself, such as guided excursions, workshops, conferences, markets, and live music. As icing on the cake, they also pay particular attention to the use of flowers in gastronomy.
Where to sleep green: at the Eco Villa Triglav on Pokljuka, consisting of ecological apartments and chalets, located in the heart of the Triglav National Park. Your stay will be delighted by the outdoor hot tub, which reuses rainwater.
7. Slow Food Travel Destination – Weissensee (Austria)
Last but not least, let’s explore the Pearl of Weissensee, in Austria, which is the first destination in the world to earn the title of Slow Food Travel Destination. This destination offers you a wide range of food products on the banks of its alpine lake. Its particular commitment to zero kilometer products is also due to the passion with which the small local manufacturers have handed down the knowledge from generation to generation, maintaining, as you will be able to taste firsthand, and extraordinary food and wine heritage.
Where to sleep green: at the Bio-Vitalhotel Weissenseerhof, an eco-friendly hotel immersed in the unspoiled nature of Carinthia. This corner of paradise, a few steps away from Lake Weissensee, offers you the opportunity to taste traditional dishes, cooked with organic and local products.
Leave the stress of everyday life behind you and come and relax in the Alps: the 7 itineraries of the Alpine Pearls will delight you with a combination of majestic landscapes and delicious dishes with local products at kilometer 0. Don’t miss this opportunity!
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