Path of Taste: Perugia, Trasimeno and the Altotiberini Hills
A journey of flavors that allows you to visit beautiful Perugia, the capital city of the region, neighboring Assisi with its great heritage of historical and mystical legacy of St. Francis, and the whole area of the Trasimeno lake, with its many surrounding towns including Castiglione del Lago, Passignano sul Trasimeno. There are also other cities of interest like Torgiano, Corciano and Deruta, each of which has their own tourist attractions. 30 km from Perugia you can visit the medieval town of Gubbio. Perugia is easily accessible from the E45 motorway, and from it in an easterly direction you can reach Assisi (10 km), and to the west within minutes the area of the lake. The whole area is characterized by fields of wine and olive oil. Also important is the cultivation of vegetables, among which the local product par excellence, “Fagiolina Trasimeno” (Trasimeno beans).
How to get here:
Car: Superstrada E45
Airport: Sant’Egidio (San Francesco)
PLACES TO VISIT
Perugia and Assisi
Regional capital, Perugia is lively and full of history. The nerve center of the same Corso Vannucci is overlooked by numerous palaces including the beautiful Palazzo dei Priori, and culminating in the cathedral of San Lorenzo, in front of the historic Fontana Maggiore, which has always been a symbol of the city along the Rocca Paolina. Of considerable interest is the Galleria Nazionale dell’Umbria that boasts a beautiful display of paintings by Perugino and Pinturicchio. Perugia annually hosts major events including Eurochocolate a great feast for chocolate lovers. This Umbrian town has a long tradition in the production of fine chocolate and sweets whose tradition is well represented in the Museo Perugina. In the large territory of Perugia is no shortage of interesting places to visit, including Torgiano, Corciano and Deruta.
Deruta is well known for its long standing tradition of artistic ceramics for which there is also a museum of ceramics. Torgiano is certainly the most representative village for wine tourism. Torgiano is in fact a classic Umbrian village surrounded by vineyards and olive groves that earned it the nickname of the ‘town of wine and oil’. The village is quaint with the beautiful Palazzo Manganelli and the Baglioni Tower. In the heart of the village is the Olive Tree and Oil Museum and the Museum of Wine made at the behest of the historic Lungarotti family. Torgiano was the first Umbrian town to get the DOC and DOCG for its wines. In the nearby village of Brufa is an original sculpture park of contemporary art.
Just 10 km from Perugia Finally Assisi, the city of St. Francis, located close to the natural park of Monte Subasio always fixated with the strong presence of the church and places associated with the figure of St. Francis, now near a global level, a place of pilgrimage and tourism. The Basilica was officially inaugurated by Pope Innocent IV in 1253. The architectural achievement follows the fresco decorations, first by Cimabue (1277), in the area of the left transept (Frescoes from 27 to 32), then Giotto (1296), with the beginning of the vast cycle of paintings “The Stories of St. Francis”, consists of 28 works. The city, however, also offers other numerous reasons and attractions: from Roman ruins to the many churches (Santa Maria degli Angeli and Santa Maria Maggiore), and the Rocca Maggiore. Just at the bottom of the Mounte Subasio, another natural area where there is the Eremo delle Carceri, a spiritual place frequented by St.Francis.
Villages of the Trasimeno lake
From the territory of Perugia and Assisi the transition to the area around the Trasimeno lake is almost obligatory because of its proximity. This area has always been recognized for the landscapes and the quaint villages, towns and interesting places to see surrounding the lake. The lake along with its eponymous nature park is in fact a popular tourist destination for its natural attractions and also the production of food and wine. Along its perimeter there are areas producing Trasimeno DOC wine, olive oil and crops. Among the towns facing the lake the first one you find coming from Perugia is Magione (an umbrian town where in its municipality there are a natural oasis and the Fishing local Museum) . Towns along the lakeside are Tuoro sul Trasimeno (the embarkation for the islands of the lake), which is famous for being the battlefield of the battle between the Romans and Hannibal, and Castiglione del Lago.
Castiglione del Lago offers a nice view of the lake and the Tuscan town of Cortona. The village has a nice center with a long walk through the shops and typical workshops, walk culminates with the beautiful Rocca del Leone, an ancient fortification viable that can be visited. Today it is largely used as a space for events such as Trasimeno Blues festival. The territory marked by fertile fields and the presence of the lake, makes the Umbrian village you can enjoy dishes of freshwater fish such as carp, perch, tench. The cultivation of the land and the rural spirit exalted in traditional dishes such as peasant soup in a bread crust and fagiolina “pici con la nana” (hand-made pasta with duck sauce).
Going south of Castiglione del Lago you will meet two nice boroughs like Paciano and Panicale while keep going south, in a hilly area 500 meters above sea level, is Città della Pieve. The center of this small town is characterized by red brick buildings and picturesque streets that cross it, including the famous Vicolo di Baciadonne one of the narrowest in Italy. Also worth seeing are the works of a famous citizen of Pieve, the Umbrian painter Perugino in the Cathedral, the church of Sant Agostino and Palazzo Corgna.
Gubbio and the Tiber River Valley
This large territory which is still part of the province of Perugia and extends to the entire area north of the Trasimeno lake and Perugia itself. It is characterized by the presence of small villages interesting to visit such as Montone, Citerna and Pietralunga and more densely populated towns like Umbertide, Citta di Castello and Gubbio. Umbertide is the first city of the high-Tiber Valley encountered north of Perugia . It is interesting in the historic old medieval fortress and its surroundings with the Abbey Montecorona and castles of Montalto and Civitella Ranieri .
Città di Castello is a dynamic town in northern Umbria (around 40,000 inhabitants), distinguished for its vitality and the artisan tradition fabric making. The old town is a measure of man with many monuments and places of interest such as the Municipal Art Gallery and Museum (of significance here is the Martyrdom of Saint Sebastian by Signorelli), the collection of the artist Alberto Burri, the Museo del Duomo, and the Collezione Tessile Umbria. Outside the center there is the thermal spa of Fonticchio.
Gubbio is a classical Medieval town located in the northeast of the region, surrounded by a rich landscape of hills and woods and near the Regional Park of Monte Cucco. Monte Cucco is a protected natural environment rich in vegetation and picturesque places such as over 30 km of caves in the cavity of the park, in many parts passable by lovers of caving. Their depth reaching up to 930 meters underground. Gubbio appreciates the old town where stands the Palazzo dei Consoli, which shines from its high white walls. The town is also famous for the popular Corsa dei Ceri, a symbol of the region of Umbria. Near Gubbio are the towns Pietralunga and Montone.
DOCG “Torgiano Rosso Riserva”
This wine has the privilege of being the first in the region to be given the DOC label in 1968, which later became DOCG in 1990. Torgiano Rosso Riserva is a red wine produced in the restricted area of the municipality of Perugia in the town of Torgiano and that through a process of aging of minimum three years, acquires a bright ruby color and taste perfectly harmonious. This wine wisely uses grape varieties including, mainly Sangiovese and Canaiolo.
DOC “Colli Perugini”
Questa denominazione di origine controllata “Colli Perugini” del 1981, è riservata a vini bianco, rosso, novello, spumante e vin santo. Questo vino si produce nella provincia di Perugia, nel territorio marcato dalla presenza del capolouogo regionale.
DOC “Colli Perugini”
This designation of origin was given in 1981, and is reserved for White, Red, Novello, Spumante and Vin Santo. This wine is produced in the province of Perugia, in the territory marked by the presence of the region’s capitol.
DOC “Colli del Trasimeno”
A wine produced in the same area as the Colli Perugini DOC, but stretching to the west skirting the perimeter of the entire Trasimeno lake. It obtained the designation of origin in 1972. Today this wine (also found with the name of “Trasimeno”) is produced in different types, from White (sparkling) to Red (novello, sparkling, reserve) to Rosé, Grechetto, Merlot, and Gamay.
DOC “Colli Altotiberini”
A DOC wine since 1980 produced in the province of Perugia and extending to the north of the region and the towns of Città di Castello and Gubbio. This wine is made from grapes such as Grechetto, Chardonnay, Pinot Blanc, Pinot Noir, Pinot Grigio, Trebbiano, Sangiovese, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon.
Umbrian wine produced in the territory of Assisi and Perugia. DOC since 1997 it is obtained from Tuscan Trebbiano, Grechetto, Sangiovese, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Pinot Noir. The Assisi DOC wine is produced in different types of white, red, rosé and variations in reserve for the reds made from Cabernet, Merlot and Pinot Noir.
Province of Perugia, white and sparkling wines in the standard typologies; Rosè (normal and novello), Red (normal and novello).
Wineries Perugia, Trasimeno and the Altotiberini Hills
Local wineries in this part of Umbria that has a long history of vineyards and wine producers. With different areas of production of DOC wines such as Colli del Trasimeno, “Assisi”, Colli Perugini, and the prized Torgiano Riserva DOCG. The area north of Perugia extending up to Città di Castello area produces “Colli Altotiberini” DOC.
Extra Virgin Olive Oil DOP – Colli del Trasimeno & Colli di Assisi
Areas appreciated for the production of olive oil; the hills of Assisi and the hills of Trasimeno which use Dolce Agogia in addition to the common varities of the region.
Tartufo Bianco (White Truffle) Città di Castello – Valtiberina
A superb product of the earth, the white truffle is found in different parts of Umbria, but particularly in the northern part of Chiasco and high Valtiberina, between Gubbio and Citta di Castello. This town is also home to a traditional annual trade show dedicated to this precious tuber.
Tartufo Estivo o Scorzone (Gubbio – Valtiberina)
The black summer truffle, better known as Scorzone is one of the most popular products in different variations and regional recipes of Umbria. Its spread in this way is wide and involves the whole region, although the areas most identifiable for research and the collection are the upper Tiber river (where we note here also a fair amount of the prized white truffles) and the area of Norcia and the Valnerina.
<h2>Patata bianca di Pietralunga (White Potato)
Widespread and appreciated potato of Pietralunga nell’eugubino it is ideal for dumplings, pies and mashed (amidosa). They are different from the more famous Rossa di Colfiorito (IGP) and Campitello.
Patata rossa di Campitello
This potato is grown in small quantities in the middle of Umbrian hill areas. It has a special appearance and flavor that are enhanced when cooking in the oven or used as a basic ingredient for the preparation of appetizing gnocchi.
Castagna di Morra
In the small town of Morra near Città di Castello in the northern part of Umbria, for over forty years they have celebrated this chestnut with a festival. The local chestnut is distinguished by its taste and appearance. It is harvested and consumed in autumn, cooking it on the stove or milled to obtain a fine flour for cakes and sweets.
Fagiolina del Trasimeno
Another legume whose name explains its origins and where it is cultivated today in the towns around the Trasimeno lake. A legume delicious and savory in flavor with a soft texture, ideal for soups and salads, or cooked in a pan with tomato and sauteed garlic.
Broccoletti del Trasimeno
A vegetable grown especially in the land around the lake, which has special geological characteristics being very sandy. It has a pleasantly bitter taste making it a great side dish. It also goes very well with sausages and roast meats, or as a condiment for focacca and salty tortes.
Zafferano (Saffron) di Città della Pieve
Mainly from Cascia and the territory of Gubbio and Città della Pieve, Umbrian saffron is of the highest quality and very appreciated in the kitchen for preparing dishes with strong fragrant flavors.
Pesche di Montecorona
The production of Montecorona peaches was born in the area of Umbertide in the 50’s, but production was interrupted for a long time and resumed only 10 years ago. This fruit has firm flesh is very fragrant and tasty.
Mazzafegati dell’Alta Valle del Tevere
A Slow Food protected traditional pork sausage made with liver and spices.
Vin Santo Affumicato dell’Alta Valle del Tevere
A Slow Food typical of the area of the Città di Castello – Valtiberina. A technique that made it a unique and original product spread throughout the region. T grapes are dryed or coppiole (hanging clusters together in twos) in rooms full of smoke fueled by stoves, adding a pleasant smoky note to the Vin Santo.
PRODUCERS AND FOOD SHOPS
Local Producers of Perugia, Trasimeno and the Altotiberini Hills
Agricultural companies, typical products, and farms in the area of Perugia, Assisi, Trasimeno lake and northern Umbria. Breweries, mills and farms, through which it is easy to find quality products such as extra virgin olive oil, cheese, vegetables, honey.
- Bringoli o Tagliolini alla tinca: handmade thin cut pasta accompanied by a tasty sauce prepared with Tinca fish from the Trasimeno lake.
- Passatelli in brodo: pasta made with egg and breadcrumbs in a vegetable or chicken broth.
- Minestra di quadrucci al battuto: handmade egg pasta in a broth flavored with lard.
- Zuppa di fagiolina del Trasimeno: soup made from the typical small legumes of the Trasimeno area with a delicate taste.
- Pasta e fagioli: a traditional and “poor” dish, with a choice of pasta topped with beans, garlic, and rosemary.
- Gnocchi al sugo d’oca: potato gnocchi served with tasty homemade sauce made from goose and a little bit of tomato.
- Acquacotta: a simple dish, tasty and light made of stale bread softened in broth with vegetables and tomato.
- Cappelletti in brodo di gallina o di cappone: fresh handmade pasta shaped like little “hats” filled with meat, served in broth.
- Imbrecciata umbra: soup with legumes and grains.
- Tegamaccio: a typical soup with local lake fishes
- Bruschetta boscaiola: bruschetta with olive oil, mushroom, and black truffle pate.
- “Regina in Porchetta”: the traditional quintessential dish of the Trasimeno lake, porchetta style carp fish.
- Anguilla in umido o al tegamaccio: this fish has an intense flavor cooked with tomato, garlic, onion and bay leaf.
- Frittura di latterini: tasty fried small lake fish.
- Uova di Luccio: this so-called “poor man’s caviar” actually has an intense yet delicate flavor, a great topping for pasta or crostini.
- Patè di tinca: this very tasty pate is made with Tinca a typical local fish.
- Oca e Agnello arrosto: goose and lamb, two typical roasted meats of Perugia and Umbria.
- Torta al testo (o Ciaccia): bread made with flour and water, and baked under ashes or “testo” a metal or stone put on the grill.
- Friccò all’eugubina: mixed fried meat (rabbit, chicken, lamb, pork ribs), spicy and seasoned all together in a crock.
- Baggiana: known elsewhere as “scafata” it is a mix of vegetables and legumes (beans, chard, onions, tomatoes and fennel), all cooked with tasty bacon.
- Fagioli all’uccelletto: baked beans
- Broccoletti del Trasimeno: broccoletti sauté with olive oil and garlic.
- Cioccolata e derivazioni: Perugia great tradition in the production and processing of cocoa and chocolate is well represented by the yearly unmissable event: Eurochocolate.
- Strufoli: typical dessert of carnival.
- Brustengolo: a dessert with raisins, walnuts, pine nuts.
- Fave di Morti: typical dessert of Perugia with almond paste and sugar, usually found during the feast of All Saints.
- Torciglione: a dessert rolled with pine nuts, raisins, dried fruit and sugar.
RESTAURANTS AND TRATTORIAS
Restaurants Perugia, Trasimeno and the Altotiberini Hills
Restaurants, wine bars, local trattorias in the area of Perugia, Assisi and the Trasimeno lake. An area of Umbria particularly broad and expansive, where you can find a large variety of delicacies such as white and blacks truffles, and Trasimeno lake fish. Some of the most traditional dishes: Umbrichelli al sugo d’oca (duck), mazzafegati, torta al testo, pollo (chicken) alla cacciatore, torcolo di San Costanzo, anguille (eel) and regina in porchetta (carp).
LOCAL EVENTS & FESTIVALS
- Piacere Barbecue
- Bianco, rosso e blues eventi eno-musicali
- Rassegna degli Antichi Sapori – (località Rivotorto)
- Fiera del Toro cotto al girarrosto
- Festa della Torta al testo e vini DOC Colli Perugini
- Festa del Vino e delle Castagne
- Sagra della Porchetta
- Sagra del Bruschettone
- Sagra del Pesce