POLENTA, PUMPKIN, CHESTNUTS AND CHEESES: AUTUMN IS SERVED
SEASONAL MENUS IN OUR LOCAL RESTAURANTS, INNS AND FARMSTAYS. ENJOY THE TEMPTATIONS OF TRADITIONAL FLAVORS
Local mushrooms, sweet chestnuts, pumpkin, cheeses and cured meats. In Oasi Zegna, autumn has arrived on the table too. While the landscape is donning its magical autumnal hues, cooks in the area’s restaurants, inns and farmstays are concocting menus based on traditional recipes and local products. Food that’s perfectly palate provoking after a hike or bike along the paths in Oasi Zegna. Here’s a look at the autumn 2020 offering, so you can imagine the inviting aromas already wafting around kitchens in Bielmonte, Trivero Valdilana and Veglio.
BIELMONTE The restaurant at Albergo Bucaneve, headed by chef Ernesto Tonetto, has devised a menu called Foliage 2020 (25 euros per person, with water and a glass of wine) including a chestnut flan, caramelized onions and mushrooms for starters, and a main course of pumpkin ravioli, speck and fondue or sage-flavored trout (straight from the Sessera) with vegetables, followed by a chilled zabaglione dessert with chocolate sauce.
TRIVERO VALDILANA At Cascina Il Faggio, they base the menu on their own fruit and vegetables and on locally produced cheeses, cured meats and meat. Their autumn 2020 starters include topside ??? marinated with alpine herbs; an in-season vegetable tart with cream of Maccagno (cheese); a savory strudel with autumn vegetables and a light bagna cauda (savory dip); a selection of local cheeses accompanied by honey and fruit preserves; and pappa al pomodoro (bread & tomato soup). 1st course: braised meat agnolotti (pasta) on a purée of black Venus rice, mountain butter and sage; semi-wholegrain ravioli with chards and mascarpa (cheese) on a savory zabaglione; panissa piemontese (type of risotto), PDO carnaroli risotto with beans and salame della duja (type of salami); semolina and parmesan gnocchi on a mountain toma (cheese) cream. The 2nd courses are a treat for carnivores, ranging from Fassona beef cheek (braised with Barbera wine and served on crisp polenta with buttered greens) to an entrecôte of young beef (with thyme flavored red potatoes) or fillet of pork (in a crust of nori algae and mustard, on a pumpkin and agricultural beer purée). For non-meat eaters, there’s an aubergine and courgette parmigiana with mountain toma. And to finish in style, you can choose between some Novara gorgonzola with a glass of Erbaluce passito or a bunet, a homemade tiramisù or a gianduia chilled dessert with raspberry sauce. Local grappas and liqueurs from Liquorificio Rapa complete the menu. The starters at the Castagneto, a restaurant very close to the Santuario Nostra Signora della Brughiera, feature lard and honied chestnuts, cotechino (a kind of pork sausage) and chestnut purée, marron chestnut flour crêpes with autumn vegetables and a bagna cauda. The 1st course is garganelli (pasta) with cep mushrooms and Bra sausage, and the 2nd is chuck of veal with chestnuts, rosemary potatoes and cabbage stewed in tomato. The dessert is a veritable hymn to the season: marron chestnut tart. Seasonal products also feature on the pizzas served at Microbirrificio Jeb, which offers pizza with mushrooms and toma (cheese) or Paletta (cured ham) and toma, miacce, various platters, JebBurgers, toasted sandwiches and baguettes - to accompany their wide range of craft beers of course. Pizzas also take pride of place at the Caffè al Centro, where 15 October 2020 sees the arrival of the new “Gourmet Winter” and pizzas made with Neapolitan style dough. The pizzaioli at the Centro leaven their dough for over 40 hours and use select ingredients enabling them to produce light and fragrant pizzas. On the autumn menu at the Hostaria Caulera, on the other hand, you’ll find spätzle with butter, sage and crispy smoked speck, fresh pasta with game sauce, polenta concia, stewed and braised meats, abbey beer goulash, scrigno di tumin (organic goat cheese) and a generous selection of house desserts. VEGLIO The Albergo la Pineta too is devoting much of its à la carte menu to this season’s dishes, all with locally sourced products prepared with traditional recipes.