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Morbegno in Cantina: Wine, Osterias and Itineraries in Valtellina Valley

At a little bit more than an hour from Milan, in the splendid landscape of the Alps, Valtellina valley offers a rich food and wine tradition. We discovered this area, taking the chance during the ‘Morbegno in Cantina‘ (that translates to Morbegno at the winery) event that is now at its 21st edition. It is a great opportunity for tasting the wines of this valley and for trying the typical dishes! 

THE TOUR OF WINE CELLARS

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The pouch and the official ‘Morbegno in Cantina’ glass| © Martina Milani

After receiving the pouch that you need for carrying your official ‘Morbegno in Cantina’ glass around and after equiping yourself with a map (and a lot of patiance for the long queues) you can start your tour of the wineries. You can choose among four different itineraries:

  • green itinerary (eight wineries with a selection of DOC (Controlled Origin Denomination) and DOCG (Controlled and Guaranteed Origin Denomination) wines), price 20 euros
  • yellow itinerary (eight wineries with a selection of DOC and DOCG wines), price 20 euros
  • red itinerary (eight wineries with a refined selection of DOCG, Riserva and Sforzato wines), price 25 euros
  • gold itinerary (a tasting of white wines, Riserva and Sforzato wines, mainly at Palazzo Malacrida), price 40 euros

The ticket is valid for one glass of wine at each winery, with the exception of the gold itinerary during which you can taste two per winery. The choice, among two or more wines, is guided and explained by a sommelier from the Italian Sommelier Association. Furthermore, at each location, you can taste some typical products from Valtellina: her majesty the Bresaola (air-cured beef cold cut), the Valtellina Casera cheese and the bisciola cake that contains raisins, dried figs and dried fruit.

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The tour of the wineries| © Martina Milani

On October 15 and 16 only, in occasion of the 109th Bitto cheese exhibition, you can also opt for adding the special cheese&wine itinerary, if you choose the red itinerary, and discover the cheese tradition of the Valley among young cheese, goat cheese and the renowned Bitto and Valtellina Casera.

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Bitto cheese| © Martina Milani

WHAT TO VISIT WHEN AT ‘MORBEGNO IN CANTINA’

Between one wine cellar visit and another, maybe if you want to avoid some queue, you can also discover the artistic heritage of Morbegno’s historical centre: Palazzo Malacrida, with its Italian gardens, from which you can enjoy a wondeful view, the small St.Peter church, St.Antonio church, Assunta Sanctuary, all with abundant frescos.

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Morbegno| © Martina Milani

WHERE TO EAT

Both the town of Morbegno and the surroundings have many restaurants, agriturismos (farm restaurants) and osterias (taven-like eateries) where you can taste the typical products: from salami to cheese, from pizzoccheri to polenta taragna (buckwheat polenta), from sciatt (fried cheese ball in a buckwheat dough) to bisciola, there’s plenty of choice! We suggest to make a reservation before starting the tour of the wineries, seen the high number of visitors.

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A dish of Pizzoccheri |© Martina Milani

We chose Antica Osteria Rapella in via Margna in Morbegno. Noi abbiamo scelto l’Antica Osteria Rapella in via Margna a Morbegno. Since we had already had cheese and cold cuts during our visit we went straight to the first and second courses: Pizzoccheri alla Valtellinese, grape risotto with Bitto cheese fondue, deer salmì stewed in wine with polenta Taragna and homemade apple pie. The price? Around 25 euros per head, super affordable!

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Grape risotto and Bitto fondue| © Martina Milani

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Deer salmì stewed with Grumello wine and served with buckwheat polenta|© Martina Milani

In occasion of the ‘Morbegno in Cantina’ event, the train company Trenord has organized special trains (from/to Milano Centrale train station) with rides up to midnight, but if you had too many drinks you can also choose to stay at one of the many bed&breakfasts of the valley!

C’mon, there is only one weekend left, don’t miss this chance! 

Read the original article on Conosco un Posto. This English version was translated by Tamara Ilic.

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