His majesty, the Truffle

The king of todays gourment cuisine is a potato-like mushroom that grows underground and lives symbiotically with different types of oak trees, usually near the rivers.

Italian regions of Alba and Piedmont are widely known for their truffles. However, experts prize truffles that grow in the Istrian soil even more, for their superb quality and exquisite taste.

The forest of Motovun, situated in the central part of Croatian region of Istra and overlooking Mirna river valley, treasures the best truffles. Giancarlo Zigante, owner of the famous Zigante restaurant in the village named Livade owns also a Guiness World Record for finding 1.310 kilogram heavy white truffle in the Motovun forrest.

White truffles (Tuber Magnatum Pico) are the priciest among truffle. Black ones mostly grow throughout the year but white truffle grows from September till January and thus wears a heavier price tag. This is a real treat that is usually served fresh, just shaved over a plate of meat or hot pasta. Special type of homemade pasta called fuži or pljukanci with a bit of truffles on top- this is Istrian trademark dish and comfort food.

Just imagine preparing every meal with this delicacy. That is the way Istrians live and see nothing special in it. The luxurious lifestyle where you can add some truffle on every meal and enjoy it with fabulous wine is natural for inhabitants of the villages scattered on the hilltops of Central Istria.

Photo by: Stancija Kovačići

Photo by: Natura tartufi

And not only truffles but also various truffle based delicacies like tartufatta, truffle spreads, truffle oil, Trufella (truffle nutella)…

So, if you are hunting for the king of delicacies, search no more. Istrian forrests are a place to be.

But, here’s an almost unknown fact- even if you are visiting only the capital, you can revel in some truffle hunting because they can also be found on the slopes of mount Medvednica, green hill on the north side of Zagreb. We can make it happen.

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