The season of mists and mellow fruitfulness continues and, naturally, this being a Tuscan autumn, it’s a season as rich, as warm and as beautiful as the landscape itself. This month we’ll give you the inside track on a donkey derby and a number of festivals and events with a distinctly ‘foodie’ twist.
Nothing exemplifies the richness of Tuscany more than its wonderful truffles. They may be expensive but that’s only because they are so very good! At the Sagra del Tartufo you can learn the secrets of this buried Tuscan treasure. And, not to be outdone by the mythical fungus, gourmets are urged not to overlook the regions wonderful chestnuts especially when you can eat so well and so reasonably at the Riofreddo Festival. Good food and great wine are in evidence at the Boccacesca Festival too and it’s exceptional value!
Elsewhere we cover culture in the form of the Rome Film Festival and a spot of living history at the Sagra del Tordo.
Sagra del Tartufo Bianco (8th October-27th November):
This annual fair is the chance to immerse yourself in the realm of one of Italy’s undeniable jewels, the White Truffle. Visit Alba, world renowned for its famous white truffles, where you can learn from the very best, local truffle hunters and vendors, ways to use the delicate truffle in the kitchen. This experience will only leave your taste buds wanting more.
Boccacesca (October 7th-9th October):
For just ten euros, one can enjoy the region’s best food and wine whilst enjoying Certaldo’s Bocceccesca festival. Luring in food and wine fanatics you’ll encounter a diversity of visitors, all interested in exploring and learning about the local products through cooking classes, competitions and tastings.
Donkey Race (October 4th):
What started as a joke among locals has now become a popular, competitive race between the districts of Alba. On the first Sunday of October a race in the form of the Palio di Siena takes place, the catch are the donkeys. Join and support the districts while they fight for the victory and treasured Palio cloth.
Rome Film Festival:
This year the eleventh edition of Rome Film Festival will take place from the 13th to the 23rd of October, in Parco della Musica. The festival includes competitions, many events for the cinema fanatics and international movie premiers.
Sagra del Tordo (29th & 30th October):
Montalcino has always been a point of interest for migrating birds, in particular the thrush. Local hunters used October to compete with each other in shooting competitions and upon their return to a banquet awaited. Now, on the last weekend of October, the town dress up in medieval costume and hold dancing, singing and archery competitions. The thrush now has become protected so unfortunately it is no longer on the menu but plenty of delicious food and other local products can still be found.
From the 31st of October to the 1st of November, Riofreddo (in the province of Roma) holds a chestnut festival. From mid-day visitors have the chance to indulge in a local lunch for the cost of fifteen euros. This lunch consists of a variety of dishes from the region including the renowned chestnut.