As a absolute food frenzy, the hunt for the white truffle is among my top priorities. Those of you who have enjoyed the delight that the white truffle brings know what I am talking about. What started of with a suggestion during diner with my friends, has been put into practice. The past weekend we have flown to Italy to visit the White Truffle Festival in Alba
, Piemont. Prized for its intense aroma and flavour, the Alba truffle is black (nero) or white (bianco) and is sniffed out of the ground by dogs. In the past the trufflehunters (trifolai) used pigs to find the truffle, but the problem with the pigs was that they tried to eat the truffle right away.
The best white truffles come from Alba, and go for 5500 euro per kilo.
Saturday we rushed to Alba to visit the truffle festival. Along the way some locals told us that the festival was closed, which made me very sad en paranoid. However after a few inquiries we learned that the festival was still going strong, and would continue untill 20.00 hours. That was a big relieve. The entrance fee was 10 euros, which includes a glass for tasting wine. When we entered the market, the aroma was all encompassing. On the markets a variety of products are sold and available for tasting, such as: white truffle oil, truffle butter, truffle sauce, varieties of cheeeses (with or without truffle), saucisse, hams, wine, chocolate products, etcetera. This truly was paradise on earth. After tasting a wide varieties of products, a big load of wine and grappa, it was time to purchase some truffle products to take home. I ended up with white truffle oil, butter, chestnut cheese, salsa di tartufi bianco. My friends went all out and even purchased some black truffles to garnish the food at home.
We ended the evening by enjoying a four course white truffle menu with chef Luigi in restaurante Maradonna Di Como. Live is good to say the least.