If you are in Europe and in need of some inspiration to plan a weekend getaway in October or November, look no further! Today, we are taking you to Alba, in Italy.
Each Autumn, the lovely city of Alba, in Piemonte, is home to the International White Truffle Fair. An event not to be missed! So, if you fancy a romantic weekend, exquisite food and great wines, this post is for you …
Two years ago, Monsieur Chéri surprised me with an impromptu weekend getaway to Alba. Yes I know, I am a very lucky girl and Monsieur Chéri is definitely the best!!!
He planned this trip in October, during the International White Truffle Fair, which was a wonderful idea!
Alba is an adorable little city. I remember its streets, its historical palaces and its warm atmosphere like if it were yesterday. Very charming indeed! Moreover, if you are a foodie or just love fine cuisine, Alba is the right destination for you. For instance, why not plan a stop at Piazza Duomo, the 3 Michelin stars restaurant (reservations must be made long before your arrival though)? Other restaurants, more modest, offer a real treat for your tastebuds with their bagna cauda, truffle fondue or fassona piemontese. For lunch, we tried and really liked Osteria La Libera.The gastronomy in Piemonte is quite heavenly, trust my French opinion!
La Fiera Internazionale del tartufo bianco d’Alba
Each year, Alba becomes home to a huge truffle fair for a few weeks. This year, the 87th edition started on October 7 and will last until November 26, 2017. No excuse, you still have plenty of time to plan your trip.
The program of this year’s festivities can be found here.
Besides truffles, you’ll get to sample (and buy if you wish) some extraordinary local products such as pecorino al tartufo nero, Barolo salami, white truffle oil, fresh pasta, mushrooms etc… Nice, right? I confess that I flew back to France with a very heavy suitcase…
Alba is quite small. So naturally, once you’ve walked around, had a nice lunch and visited the gigantic market, you may wonder what to do next. My best advice is to hop in your car and drive around the vineyards, just a few minutes outside of the city. Not only will you see some wonderful landscapes, but you will also get to try some of the best wines in Italy. Since I grew up in a vineyard myself, you can imagine that I am quite picky about wine. However, I am a big fan of the wines they make in Piemonte. Barolo, Barbaresco, Nebbiolo… Go for it, they are all amazing!
We used the app Wino, to find a place to taste some of these great wines. I love this app and I wish we had it in France too. Thanks to it, we landed at Ceretto, Tenuta Monsordo Bernardina, fifteen minutes away from Alba. We had a great time there. The tour was very interesting and we got to try five wines, two of which were exceptional. The tasting room overlooks the vineyard and that made the whole experience quite unique and magical.
Alba is located in the Cuneo area, about one hour South-East of Turin. You’ll need a car to drive around. From Milan, plan for a two-hour drive.
Is it doable in one day?
Yes, easily. If you have two days, I would suggest combining Alba with a day-trip to discover Turin, the capital of Piemonte. You’ll find a detailed itinerary as well as some advice in our blog post: Turin in a day.
For the fair in Alba, plan to have some cash has no one has credit card machines and ATMs are hard to find (and sometimes do not even work).