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6 Food Festivals in Italy You Don’t Want to Miss

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Italy, a country renowned for its art, history and culture, is a place where every aspect of life is intertwined with the culinary arts. Through the shared experience of dining, one can delve deep into the heart of Italian tradition, family, politics and culture. The power of travel is such that it has the potential to transform us, leaving us forever changed, and living new experiences becomes a tapestry woven from the threads of shared meals and flavors.

Here, we present a selection of six delicious food festivals in Italy, each a captivating journey in itself.

February: Carnevale in Venice

Venice, the enchanting city already full of charm, undergoes a remarkable transformation during Carnevale, a two-week celebration famous for its Venetian masks and costumes. In the midst of the festivities, don’t miss the delicious fritelle, a famous Venetian pastry that can be found in every corner of the city. Alternatively, head to Piedmont for a less crowded experience, where you can engage in an exhilarating food fight with oranges, complete with recommended goggles.

March: St. Joseph’s Day, throughout Italy

San Giuseppe’s Day is celebrated throughout Italy, although in recent years it has merged somewhat with Father’s Day. The most delicious way to honor this day is to indulge in zeppole, a fried doughnut traditionally reserved for March 19. A beloved dessert found throughout Italy, zeppole are especially popular in Rome and Naples.

April: Vinitaly in Verona

In addition to being the setting for the stories of Romeo and Juliet and Dante’s Inferno, Verona hosts the world’s largest wine exhibition during the second week of April. Celebrating the harmonious blend of wine, food, art and culture, Vinitaly caters to everyone from the novice to the seasoned oenophile.

May: Porchettiamo in Todi

Just outside the medieval town of Todi, a village annually pays homage to the iconic Italian porchetta sandwich. This succulent delicacy is made by deboning a whole suckling pig, stuffing it with aromatic herbs, and slow-cooking it on an open spit. Served on crusty bread, the finest porchetta producers from across Italy gather in San Terenziano di Gualdo Cattaneo (Perugia) for three days of gastronomic delights, complemented by local craft beer and wine.

May: Risotto Festival in Piedmont

Celebrate the creamy carbohydrate at the Sagra del Risotto, an event that dates back to the 13th century in the small town of Sessame, Piedmont. Held on the first Sunday in May, the festival spotlights the iconic Italian rice dish and features a series of arts and cultural events, as well as a bustling street market, where you can sample authentic Italian risotto infused with local, seasonal flavors.

October: Truffle Fair in Piedmont

As autumn descends on Italy, truffle festivals and fairs herald the season of this opulent ingredient. Among them, the Alba truffle takes center stage in Piedmont, where the Alba White Truffle World Market is the largest spectacle of its kind. Here you can see outrageously expensive truffles and taste decadent dishes made with the coveted Alba white truffle.

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