The Italy for me, plus an amazing hazelnut cake

October 14, 2011 § 13 Comments


I have found my Italy!  The Italy that looms large and glorious, sun and wine drenched, vignetted in my dreams.  It’s real!  And it’s in the Langhe part of Piemonte, the region of Italy around Alba, Barolo, Barbaresco…names that may sound awfully familiar to you if you take any interest in wine.

It’s the part of Italy where Nutella was originally invented.  For real.  Just think about that for a moment.

It is the food and wine lovers region of Italy, I think, even more so than Tuscany.  Though it is gorgeous and extraordinary, with sweeping vistas of rolling hills covered with a patchwork of vineyards and hazelnut trees, the bulk of tourists don’t go there, I believe because it’s not really near or on the way to anything else.  So, if you go, it is your chosen pilgrimage, in search of food and wine, and the ridiculously quaint stone villages – complete with a castle and church – perched on every hilltop.  Villages built in the 12th century, and still so tied to their pasts that the day the tower was destroyed in 1275 is embedded in the collective memory and still seems to evoke feelings of pain.

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