Piedmont - wine, truffles and bagna cauda

The name Piedmonte literally means “at the foot of the mountains”, which definitely gives something away about its location.
Bordering Switzerland on the north and France on the west, it is basically surrounded by the Alps and Apennines and thus boasts some excellent skiing resorts such as Sestriere, Bardonecchia and Limone Piemonte.
It is not too far fetched to say that the region is a paradise for lovers of good food, wine and culture - we strongly recommend trying the esteemed white truffles or the wonderful Barolo red wine.
The main city of Turin, though known as an industrial powerhouse, is also an important centre of Baroque art and boasts some world class museums.
If it is skiing and trekking that you are looking for then the smaller but magnificent Valle D’Astoa region, blanketed as it is by Europe’s highest peaks Monte Blanc and the Matterhorn - is an earthly paradise, a picture postcard concoction of valleys, castles and spectacular scenery.

Piedmont - wine hotels & bed & breakfast

Secretplaces has chosen the best small hotels in Piedmont. We are especially fond of Alba, Turin and the Langhe region. The romantic charm and historical heritage can best be discovered from one of those hip and charming Hotels in Turin.
For a more local city break take a look at the self-catering apartments or a relaxed stay in a eco resort in Arco. Also, the agriturismos that serve dishes with their own fresh produce are an excellent option.

Piedmont - what to do

In Turin the visitors should not miss a visit to the Royal Armory, one of the richest in Europe; the Egyptian Museum, the second most important in the world after the one in Cairo, with the precious remains of the ancient civilization, which built the Pyramids.
The Sabauda Gallery houses pictorial works of the Piedmontese, Dutch and Flemish schools, as well as some valuable works of the great Tuscans, such as the Beato Angelico and the Pollaiolo.
In Vercelli the Borgogna Museum, which houses the works of the local Renaissance painters; in Alessandria the Civic Museum and the Pinacoteca deserve a visit. Asti’s art-gallery houses both fifteenth-century and eighteenth-nineteenth century paintings. Cuneo's Civic Museum is especially reserved to the local history and artistic tradition.
In Novara an interesting Epigraphic Museum can be seen in the fifteenth-century cloister of the Cathedral.

Gastronomy in Piedmont

Basically, Piedmontese cuisine is delightful. On the one hand, the traditional dishes reflect the peasant culture, recipes with a few low-cost ingredients. On the other hand, there are other dishes that reflect the gastronomic evolution that took place in the kitchens of aristocratic palaces.
A place of honor is reserved for antipastos, matchless protagonists of dinners in Monferrato or Langhe. One of the favourite antipasto dishes is made up of anchovies, prepared in a red sauce with peppers or in a white sauce, with hazelnuts.
Then there are the cold cuts, tuna paté, eel, omelettes, boiled tongue, bagnetto verde, a sauce made with garlic, parsley and anchovies. And last but not least is bagna cauda, the "leading actor" of Piedmontese dishes.
It is a sauce into which you dip raw vegetables like thistle, celery, sweet peppers, cabbage, etc. Thin soups, minestrone, garlic soups, along with the ravioli and taglierini (thin egg noodles) are the famous first courses of this region.
The main courses include, boiled beef, roast and braised beef and veal, and an assortment of fried foods called fritto misto (comprised of sausage, fried brains, cream of wheat, and other ingredients.
Don’t forget the fabulous wines these regions produces – the full bodied Barolo and Nebbiolo readily come to mind.