You will be fascinated by a charming scenario and as soon as you arrive in the peninsula, a land where red soil and the presence of stone are predominant features of the landscape, you will see there is so much to discover.
The town of Bale Valle itself has a lot to offer, also with respect to local culinary traditions. Given its geographical position, close to the sea, with surrounding hilly terrains and a generally uncontaminated territory, it is fairly obvious that in this area we will find products of the highest quality. When these products are put to good use by people who love cooking, the result is a series of special dishes for the most refined and discerning of palates, ranging from classical recipes to the more exotic dishes of a ‘nouvelle cuisine’.
Initiatives undertaken here tend to focus on tradition and history, and there is a desire to attract the attention of tourists and visitors curious to acquire knowledge of a folkloristic and ethnological nature. This is why we emphasize particular sites, works of art and the culture of the local inhabitants. On account of its characteristics and the thoughtful preservation of the historic centre, the small town of Bale Valle is recognised as one of the most beautiful town in Istria. Having ascertained this, all you need to do is concentrate on the stimuli your sensitive nose is communicating to you and your satellite navigation device and follow the signs that lead you to Bale Valle.
When is it best to visit the area?
It may be a good idea to avoid the mid-August crowds and come in the spring or at the beginning of autumn. Why? Because in these periods Istria can offer you its very best ‘fruits’. Do you like fish? In May you will find the best and largest sea bass, locally called ‘lubin’ or, more commonly, ‘brancin’. Those who have never tried it should be advised that the fish caught in this particular month have a superb taste. The wild asparagus that ripens in the late spring is also used as an ingredient in wonderful scrambled-egg stews made with free-range chicken eggs and served with the typical Istrian, hand-rolled ‘pljukanci’ pasta. If you are accompanied by someone who lives in the town they will show where you can find asparagus and how to collect the stems. You may then find someone in one of the local restaurants who can cook the vegetables for you or may prefer to do it yourself in the well-fitted kitchen of a mobile villa at the Mon Perin campsite. And in the autumn … it’s the mushroom phase. Penny bun (‘vrganji’) and chanterelle (‘lisičice’) mushrooms are very popular, and mycologists point out that from September to November it is possible to find more than eighty varieties. With the smell of the wine-must emanating from the cellars and workshops of the winegrowers, who, at the end of the harvesting period, carefully control the fermentation process, and with the occasionally encountered fragrance of mushrooms, cheeses and salted sardines you may feel a slight sense of inebriation. You may thus be distracted from your desire to concentrate on the other wonders of the town, especially if after a sumptuous and lavish meal you try one of the wines of this area (a paradise for wine lovers), such as the Malvasia, Terrano, Chardonnay or Merlot varieties, which have a particular flavour influenced by the red karst soil and sea breezes that caress the vines and grapes throughout the entire summer period.
Bale Valle offers some quite refined culinary specialities, and we must not forget its exceptional meat dishes. During the summer many of them will be presented when the food and gourmet festival is held at a few places within the sound of the church bells. Groups of professional and also amateur chefs attend these events and visitors can try some of the meats, choosing from a wide range of specialities, including lamb, wild game and many other types of meat. The local methods of preparation produce very tasty and appetising results. It’s a mouth-watering experience!
We have done what we can to describe the attractions and refined culinary specialities of the small town of Bale Valle and its surrounding areas. You will have to come and see it all for yourself, and then will you be able to share your impressions with your friends.
We hope to see you soon …
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