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“Routes of taste” in Salento: Zollino, Spongano, Seclì e Ortelle

18 Lug

In local inns or in the most elegant restaurants, the typical cuisine of Salento is a real art that is celebrated on every self-respecting table. From fish dishes, in coastal resorts, to grilled meat typical of the hinterland, you will only have to choose and you will discover, through the flavors, a fundamental part of this land. In this “road map of taste” we advise you where to go and what to eat.

ZOLLINO – In the countryside of Zollino, the selection of the seeds by local farmers has made it possible to preserve some particular types of legumes that enjoy the De.Co. “Pisello nano” and broad bean (with a more flattened appearance and a pod with no more than 5 seeds) are included in the traditional agri-food productions of the Apulia Region. Also famous are chickpea, black chickpea, lentils and white beans.

But Zollino is not just a land of legumes. The symbol of this village is the “scéblasti”, a dough of bread seasoned with courgettes, olives, onions, capers and chilli which in griko means “without shape”.

SPONGANO – It is the homeland of “cunserva mara“, a tasty homemade preserve obtained from the sun drying of sweet peppers, hot peppers and tomatoes, which are then mixed in a perfect sauce to be spread on wheat bread or bruschetta.

SECLI’– It is the village famous for the “bits” of horse meat, to which a festival is dedicated every year after August 15th. The main course is accompanied by other recipes, always based on horse meat, prepared by the butchers of the town.

ORTELLE – In October Ortelle, on the occasion of the feast of San Vito, celebrates the pig Or.Vi., raised according to ancient methods following a specific protocol. The result is a delicate and tasty meat, with which sausage, ribs, skewers and capocollo are packaged for grilling or boiled or with sauce. Typical of Ortelle is also the “pirilla”, a homemade bread flavored with pieces of tomato, pumpkin, onion, black olives and, sometimes, raisins.

To find out where to stay to visit these and other villages in Salento, take a look here:

Holiday houses –> https://www.villainpuglia.it/EN/Home

Holiday villas –> https://www.villesalento.it/index.html#/    

For further information:

e-mail –> info@villesalento.it

phones –> (+39) 392/0202233 – (+39) 328/4617633

“Routes of taste” in Salento: Maglie, Lecce, Cannole e Uggiano La Chiesa

11 Lug

From “Pasticiotto” to “caffè in ghiaccio”, from “Rustico” to “Tajeddhra”: there are many typical dishes of Salento that tell a part of the history and traditions of this land. From recipes to local products, we trace a “road map of taste” through the villages of gastronomic excellence.

MAGLIE – The village hosts every year, in early August, “Mercatino del gusto“, a festival in which the flavors of the traditional cuisine of Salento are celebrated, but not only. In those days you can smell the scents and aromas of local products.

PRODUCTS – Maglie produces its renowned pecorino cheese. Whether fresh or aged, sheep’s cheese is obtained from a production process that has been handed down over the centuries. If aged for a few days, it has a soft, light yellow paste. After a long maturation, however, it has a wrinkled, leathery crust and a hard straw yellow interior: highly recommended on pasta with sauce!

LECCE – It is the main seat of the most precious architectural jewels of this land. But Lecce not only offers an artistic heritage, it is also the place where you can taste some typical dishes, which have now become famous beyond the borders of the Salento peninsula.

THE PRODUCTS – Pasticciotto is a sweet of shortcrust pastry that opens up all the sweetness of the custard inside; Cotognata is a kind of solid jam cut into blocks that comes from quince apples; Rustico is a rotisserie product made of puff pastry and stuffed with bechamel, mozzarella, tomato and a pinch of pepper that all the local people from Lecce prefer for a snack.

With the pasta di mandorla (almond pastry), at Christmas and at Easter, locals make the traditional sweets of fish shape (at Christmas) and lamb shape (at Easter). Sanguinaccio is a product of Salento gastronomic tradition based on seasoned, flavored pork blood, stuffed into the intestines of the same animal and cooked.

CANNOLE – Small town a few kilometers from the much more famous Otranto, Cànnole owes its fame mainly to the “municeddha” festival which takes place every year in August.

THE PRODUCTS – The tradition of eating snails has been celebrated since 1985 when the idea of ​​a party dedicated to it was born. The idea is inspired by the “cuzzari“, the name by which the inhabitants of Cannole were called snail-gatherers. During the festival, the snail is prepared according to various recipes: fried, roasted and with sauce.

UGGIANO LA CHIESA – Framed by olive groves and countryside, Uggiano la Chiesa is the “Village of Bread and Oil”.

THE PRODUCTS – Every September, on the occasion of the Fair of the Village of Bread and Oil, it is possible to taste the fragrant loaves, accompanied by other typical culinary specialties.

To find out where to stay to visit these and other villages in Salento, take a look here:

Holiday houses –> https://www.villainpuglia.it/EN/Home  

Holiday villas –> https://www.villesalento.it/index.html#/

For further information:

e-mail –> info@villesalento.it

phones –> (+39) 392/0202233 – (+39) 328/4617633

Wine and olive oil routes in Salento: Copertino and Leverano

20 Giu

Wine and olive oil are the two jewels of Salento and among the main products of the Mediterranean diet. Olive groves and vineyards mark the landscape of this land not only from a visual point of view, also influencing the other senses such as smell and taste. A brief overview of the centers of Salento excellence will guide you in choosing the DOC products to enjoy the true flavor of this land. Let’s discover the wine and oil routes in Copertino and Leverano.

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COPERTINO – The castle is the fulcrum of the historic center of the village which rises 15 km from Lecce. The manor is in fact one of the largest and best preserved in Salento with its Baroque embroideries, the portal and the Renaissance balconies. The maze of alleys in the historic center leads to the birthplace of San Giuseppe, the “saint of flights”, a destination for tourists and pilgrims.

THE WINE – The Dop wine of the same name is produced from the Negroamaro vineyards surrounding Copertino. The production of red wine, particularly appreciated for its ruby ​​color and dry taste with a bitter aftertaste, is an excellence of the territory.

LEVERANO – Just 10 minutes from the renowned beaches of Porto Cesareo, Leverano is characterized by the cobbled streets of the historic center that lead to the Tower of Frederick II, commissioned by the Swabian emperor to protect the Ionian coast from pirate raids. Worth visiting are the Mother Church dedicated to the Annunziata, the convent of Santa Maria delle Grazie and the church of the Madonna della Consolazione.

THE WINE – Embraced by the vineyards, Leverano gives its name to a doc wine whose origin is linked to the two historic producers present in the area since the 1960s. Reds and rosés are based on Negroamaro and black Malvasia.

Leverano Doc Bianco goes well with light dishes, such as raw seafood, risotto and fried fish; Rosato is perfect for enjoying spicy cold cuts, first courses with meat sauces and grilled red meats. The Red wine, on the other hand, is ideal for cured meats and aged sheep’s cheeses and grilled, baked or stewed red meats. For some years now, the production of Vino Novello has been added, celebrated in a big party in November.

If you want to visit Salento and spend your holiday in wonderful houses or villas, click below:

Holiday houses –> https://www.villainpuglia.it/EN/Home

Holiday villas –> https://www.villesalento.it/index.html#/ 

For further information:

e-mail –> info@villesalento.it

phones –> (+39) 392/0202233 – (+39) 328/4617633

Wine and olive oil routes in Salento: Galatina, Martano, Melendugno, Vernole

13 Giu
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Wine and olive oil are the hallmark of Salento. Expanses of olive trees and vineyards as far as the eye can see characterize the landscapes of the countryside of the Heel of the Boot. A brief overview of the centres of Salento excellence will guide you in choosing the DOC products to enjoy the flavor of this land. Let’s discover the wine and oil routes in Galatina, Martano, Melendugno and Vernole.

GALATINA –The land of Taranta, where art and faith merge, but also a village with irrefutable architectural beauties. 20 km south of Lecce, Galatina boasts a very elegant historic centre where arcades and eighteenth-century palaces, embellished with imposing portals and balconies, alternate until you reach the majestic Basilica of Santa Caterina d’Alessandria, a true treasure trove of faiths.

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THE WINE – Since 1997 the wines of the city have been awarded the Galatina Doc denomination. Among the most renowned productions there are the Galatina Chardonnay, straw yellow, with a delicate aroma, dry taste and good structure, and the Galatina Negroamaro, ruby ​​red, with intense aroma and dry, full and harmonious flavor.

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MELENDUGNO – Stretching towards the Adriatic coast with its marinas (Torre Dell’Orso, Roca Vecchia, San Foca, Sant’Andrea) awarded several times by the Blue Flag for the quality of the water, Melendugno is a small town 19 km south of Lecce. In the village, we recommend to visit the numerous underground oil mills, the Baronial Palace of Amely, the Clock Tower and the Church of the Assumption, dating back to the sixteenth century.

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OLIVE OIL – A thousand hectares of olive groves, almost all centuries old, make Melendugno an important center for the production of extra virgin olive oil. The cooperative oil mill in the town is a point of reference for over 1,500 producers from Terra d’Otranto who bring their olives here, transforming them into a delicate oil with a slightly fruity flavor.

MARTANO – One of the largest centers of Salento Greece, Martano retains a strong tradition linked to the ancient language of griko, contamination between Greek and local dialect. The historic center is a set of alleys dotted with historic buildings, churches and a castle, later transformed into a baronial palace. We recommend a visit to the Monastery of Santa Maria della Consolazione, surrounded by centuries-old olive groves. Here the Cistercian friars open the doors of the delightful baroque church and the museum-art gallery dedicated to the Gallipoli painter Giulio Pagliano.

OLIVE OIL – With its centuries-old olive groves, Martano is part of the National Association “Città dell’Olio” which brings together the municipalities with an olive vocation by promoting the culture of quality extra virgin olive oil. Furthermore, in October every year, the village holds the festival of the “volìa cazzata”, the crushed olive, a local specialty, according to which the olives are crushed and then left to “ripen” in the water.

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VERNOLE – 13 km from Lecce and only 3 from Melendugno and its marinas, Vernole is part of the Valle della Cupa territory, characterized by a deep karst depression. All the sacred buildings of the village are affected by the Baroque influence, such as the church of the Assumption, of Sant’Anna and of the Incoronata. Acaya, a small hamlet, is a tiny sixteenth-century fortified village that preserves intact the castle with towers and bastions.

OLIVE OIL – Surrounded by the millenary olive trees of the surrounding countryside, Vernole still preserves in the subsoil the traces of the ancient methods of milling and oil production, with numerous underground oil mills. The oldest is the Trappeto Caffa, dating back to the sixteenth century.

If you want to visit Salento and spend your holiday in wonderful houses or villas, click below:

Holiday houses –> https://www.villainpuglia.it/EN/Home  

Holiday villas –> www.villesalento.it           

For further information:

e-mail –> info@villesalento.it

phones –> (+39) 392/0202233 – (+39) 328/4617633

Salento, the most beautiful beaches on the Adriatic coast

6 Giu

Torre Dell’Orso

Rocks and sandy white beaches: the Adriatic coast of Salento offers a variety of unique landscapes, which are worth discovering if you are on vacation here. In this short guide we point out the most beautiful beaches on the Adriatic coast.

Our journey starts from the northern part of the coast, from the seaside resorts of Melendugno, 25 km from Lecce. Continua a leggere

Unesco World Heritage Site, Puglia’s wonderful sites

25 Apr

What have Alberobello, Castel Del Monte, Basilica of San Michele Arcangelo and Umbra Forest in common? Well, apart from the fact that they are all situated in Puglia, not everyone knows that the four locations are included in the Unesco list as a World Heritage Site.

The natural, cultural and historical beauty of Puglia is often under the eyes of the visitors who every year choose to spend their holiday here. But in this case, the uniqueness of the places is formally certified by Unesco. The identification, protection and transmission to the future generations of the cultural and natural heritage of the whole world are among the main missions of UNESCO. 

ALBEROBELLO – Inserted in the Unesco list since 1996, Alberobello is truly unique in the world for its cone-shaped buildings. These are ancient houses with a cone-shaped roof made with exposed stones, built with the “muretto a secco” technique and whitewashed with quicklime. Crosses, pierced hearts and zodiac symbols decorate the top of each trullo.

The Trulli of Alberobello

In the Rione Monti, about 1000 trulli wind through the narrow alleys, among which the “Siamese trulli” stand out, with their original two-cone roof, the Church of Sant’Antonio and the Trullo Sovrano. Do not miss the Territory Museum, housed in a complex of communicating trulli, and the House of Love, today a tourist information point, the first building in the entire town, built with lime and mortar.

CASTEL DEL MONTE – Full of symbolism and unique in its kind, the fortress, in the shape of an octagonal crown, is the expression of the eccentric genius of Frederick II of Swabia, who had it built in a Gothic and Norman style. It is now well known that the recurrence of the number 8, in the form of the rooms and in numerous details, is no a coincidence, which is why the Castle is considered by some to be an esoteric monument.

Located at 540 meters above sea level, on a gentle hill about 20 km from Andria, the manor offers a breathtaking view of the sunset. The fortress, included in the UNESCO list since 1996, was perhaps used as an astronomical observatory or an imposing hunting lodge.

BASILICA DI SAN MICHELE ARCANGELO – Kept within the small town of Monte Sant’Angelo in Foggia, the Basilica of San Michele is a precious testimony of Lombard art in Italy. A staircase carved into the rock leads to the “Grotta sacra”, the place where the Archangel appeared and today a famous pilgrimage destination.

In the Junno district, the oldest part of the village, you get lost in the alleys where you can breathe the scent of the tradition of the typical “stuffed hosts”: sweets stuffed with almonds and honey. Do not miss the visit to the Norman castle, residence of Frederick II, the Tomb of Rotari and the complex of San Francesco. While 8 km from the town, among dozens of hermitages carved into the rock, stands the Abbey of Santa Maria di Pulsano, perched on a spike overlooking the gulf.

UMBRA FOREST – In spite of the name, the beech woods of the Umbra forest, in the heart of the Gargano promontory, have nothing to do with the region of central Italy, but owe their name to the Latin derivation of “umbra”, that means dark and shady.

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In the Unesco list since 2017, the area of ​​beech forests, which extends for a perimeter of 399 hectares, is part of a natural heritage of high ecological, historical and cultural value: the majestic plants are among the oldest in Europe and reach a height of almost 50 meters. The site also boasts another prestigious recognition: the inclusion in the list of the five most beautiful woods in the world by the National Geographic magazine.

If you want to visit Salento and spend your holiday in wonderful houses or villas, click below:

Holiday houses –> www.casesalento.com   

Holiday villas –> www.villesalento.it              

For further information:

e-mail –> info@villesalento.it

phones –> (+39) 392/0202233 – (+39) 328/4617633

Natural oasis of Salento: the park of “Costa Otranto-Santa Maria di Leuca e bosco di Tricase”

21 Mar

The zinzuli (the stalactites) that give the name to the Grotta della Zinzulusa and the prehistoric pictograms of the Grotta dei Cervi are just some of the most famous destinations that the park contains, an expanse of over 3000 hectares that rises in one of the most spectacular stretches of the Salento coast, along the eastern side.

Established in 2006, the park falls within the territory of 12 coastal municipalities of Salento, from Otranto to Tricase, passing through Castro. This offers a variety of panoramas ranging from the crystal clear waters of the Adriatic, with stretches of high and rocky coast, to fields dotted with country walls.

On the road that leads from Tricase to the sea stands the “Vallonea of ​​the Hundred Knights”, an example of centuries-old oak unique in Western Europe.

The park’s flora is very rich and varied and includes numerous rarities, from the Leuca cornflower to the Alisso and from Giacomini’s Veccia to orchids. Without forgetting the expanses of sea fennel and salicornia fruticosa that cover the cliffs overlooking the sea. The monk seal made its last appearance in the region right here, while nourished colonies of bats inhabit the humid caverns of various caves. To find out other natural parks in Salento, read here.

For your vacation, you can stay in one of these holiday houses:

Holiday houses –> https://www.villainpuglia.it/EN/affitti_vacanze/Santa%20Cesarea%20Terme

For further information:

e-mail –> info@villesalento.it

phones –> (+39) 392/0202233 – (+39) 328/4617633

Things to do if you’re on holidays in Salento in September

16 Ago

Uncrowded beaches, mild temperatures, many events: spending your holidays in September in Salento means enjoying the most beautiful sides of summer without the crowds of the August holidays.

If you have chosen the month of September for your holiday, Salento will be your ideal destination. That’s why. Continua a leggere

Exploring Salento, the land of Salice Salentino wine

28 Giu

Together with Primitivo and Negroamaro, Salice Salentino is the third native wine of Salento. Local food and wine products are an original and “tasty” way to explore our land and its culinary traditions. Together with the classic touristic itineraries among beaches and sea, we offer you a short trip between the provinces of Lecce and Brindisi, to discover the Salice Salentino.

PRODUCTION

Salice Salentino is a DOC wine, whose production takes place in the provinces of Brindisi and Lecce. Veglie, Guagnano and Campi Salentina, in the province of Lecce, San Pancrazio Salentino, Sandonaci and Cellino San Marco, in the province of Brindisi, are the municipalities where the wine is produced, from the vines Negroamaro, black Malvasia of Brindisi and black Malvasia of Lecce.

Salice Salentino is divided into six different types of wine, among which there are red, white, rosé and pinot bianco (also present with the sparkling type), sweet aleatico and sweet liqueur aleatico.

FEATURES

The wine has a more or less intense ruby ​​red color. The smell is pleasant and intense, while the flavor is robust but velvety. These properties make Salice Salentino particularly recommended on roasts, strong cheeses and game.

HISTORY

The origin of the DOC denomination of Salice Salentino is due to Senator Arcangelo de Castris, who, thanks to his winery “Leone De Castris”, has managed to affirm the value of this particular wine in Italy and worldwide. The winery, one of the oldest still in operation, was founded in 1665 by Duke Oronzo Arcangelo Maria Francesco De Castris, count of Lemos.

In the early 1800s the winery began exporting wine to the United States, Germany and France. Five Roses was born in 1943, the company’s best-known product and the first rosé wine to be bottled and marketed in Italy and immediately exported to the United States.

If you don’t know where to sleep in Salento, here you will find some useful advice.

holiday houses -> www.casesalento.com

Holiday luxury villas -> www.villesalento.it

email -> info@villesalento.it

Mobile Phones -> (+39) 392/0202233 – (+39) 328/461763

Exploring Salento, the land of Primitivo wine

14 Giu

Do you want to explore Salento in an different way? We suggest you an alternative way to visit our land, following the Via del Primitivo, a wine of local production which, together with Negroamaro, is one of the main products of Salento. Through a path that combines taste with history, we discover the origins and properties of this wonderful grape variety.

From Manduria to Lizzano, passing through S. Giorgio Jonico, Pulsano, Leporano, San Marzano di San Giuseppe, Sava and Avetrana, here they are the villages where we can find Primitivo wine. With a red color and an intense flavor, Primitivo goes well with cheeses, legume soups, grilled lamb.

FEATURES

Always used as a cutting wine, today Primitivo di Manduria represents one of the main product of Salento’s enology. The notes of sweet and ripe fruit (blackberries, cherries, plums) and spices define the taste of Primitivo, a wine with low acidity and high alcohol content.

Dry as a meal or natural dessert, the wine goes perfectly with grilled meats or aged cheeses. Primitivo is also the perfect companion for traditional Apulian sweets with ricotta, almond and dried fig fillings. A glass of Primitivo is fine even if tasted alone: you’ll be able to appreciate its particular notes. There are two different types: Primitivo di Manduria DOC and Primitivo di Manduria natural sweet DOCG.

Pasticciotto

HISTORY

It is not clear when the vine came in Salento. Maybe it was the ancient Greeks who brought it here or the Romans from Dalmatia. In fact, the wine is genetically very similar to the Crljenak Kastelsnski cultivated from Istria to the Sabbioncello peninsula. Another descendant from Primitivo is Zinfandel, a California cult species. In fact, it seems that, in the early nineteenth century, it was exported overseas by some Apulian migrant.

For the production of wine, the harvests take place at night, the only time when you can have respite from the heat and the sun. In 2011, in the Dolce Naturale version, the Primitivo becomes DOCG, protected and enhanced by the presence of the Primitivo Protection Consortium.

ITINERARIES

The Primitivo paths unfold in unparalleled naturalistic scenarios. We suggest you to bring comfortable shoes and a camera to capture the enchanting landscapes, such as the Natural Reserves of the Eastern Tarantino Coast: from the salt pans animated by numerous species of birds, including pink flamingos, to the marshes embellished with multiple varieties of orchids, holm oak woods and the presence of the Chidro river, custodian of Roman necropolises.

Lastly, we recommend a visit to the Museum of the Primitive Wine Civilization, testimony of the social history and agrarian vocation of this land.

If you don’t know where to sleep in Salento, here you will find some useful advice.

holiday houses -> www.casesalento.com

Holiday luxury villas -> www.villesalento.it

email -> info@villesalento.it

Mobile Phones -> (+39) 392/0202233 – (+39) 328/461763

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