Agricolture, tastes and territory

Farmer in a field, Pobietto, Provincia di Alessandria

Foto di Alessandro Giacomel

farmers in the municipalities across VENTO

Slow Food presidia

IGP products

DOP products

From the Alps to the sea, the rural landscape slowly changes: the shapes, colours, cultures and architecture . But the scenery does not only change as we move from west to east or east to west, it also changes with the sea sons, and even from one day to the next. Passing through the rice paddies, so impressive that they are called "the chequered sea," the scenery changes with each passing day, when the reflection of the water gives way to the bright green of the rice plant. Fields of wheat, corn and popolar are next to cyclists as they pass from Turin to Venice, occasionally interspersed with rice fields and some vineyard in Piemonte, farms in Lombardia, orchard in Emilia and fish farms in the Veneto, which also sees the return of rice fields in the Delta. Agriculture is predominant throughout VENTO: it is the primary source of this area. There are more than 10,000 agricultural business that along the main route of the cycle path. These businesses could easily transform into farm holiday destinations or even into simple refreshment points far local cycling tourism. Along VENTO, there is also a great deal of local produce, many of which have obtained DOC, IGP and DOP status. Such as San Mauro Torinese strawberries, Viadana melon, Boretto onions and Chioggia radicchio. The Po Valley is a foodscape, or rather a landscape that is home to an unrivalled range of food. It is no coincidence that Slow Food, a supporter of the VENTO project, has produced an entire guide entitted: Dispensa del Po. I sapori del Grande Fiume (The Po Pantry. Flavour of the Great River). Pedalling along VENTO, the landscape takes the form of food and it changes kilometre after kilometre. Between Venezia and Torino, there is a swarm of different types of stuffed pasta with different names and flavours: cappellacci, cappelletti, agnoti, agnolotti, tortelli, ravioli, fiocchetti. And when the names change, so do the fillings: meat sauce, pumpkin, amaretti biscuits and pumpki n, costmaries, pear and cheese, poppy seeds. The Po is also home to a great number of cheeses and cold cuts. Grana Padano and Parmigiano Reggiano dominate, followed by coppa, lardo, pancetta, cured and cooked hams... always accompanied by a gnocco fritto, which is known as a pinzimonio Ferrara, a pincino in Mantua and a chisulén in Piacenza. In the space of a few days, you pass from the Alps to the sea, from beef tongue with salsa verde from Morano sul Po,to peppered mussels in Porto Viro and a cone of fried fish in Chioggia. VENTO is a foodscape because in Italy, food is never a trivial matter, and it is always connected to its piace of origin. These secrets are key to reading the landscape and how it transforms between Torino and Venezia in a unique experience.