stripImg

The black gold of Umbria: a journey among truffles

  • 01/04/2022


Even in the food and wine world - and not only in that of fairy tales or legends - treasures are underground. In this case it is not a question of chests full of gold coins, but special underground mushrooms that release their intense scent once grated: we are talking about the black truffle that finds fertile soil in Umbria. Perhaps not everyone knows that, in fact, this region is a huge truffle ground, because its wooded hills are the ideal habitat for many species. So today we take you with us for a real treasure hunt, to discover the black gold of Umbria, that is the precious black truffle.


Truffle: what is it?

A prized food, which has its roots - literally - not only in the earth but also in legend. Known already in Greek and Roman times, it was believed to be born thanks to a mixture of water, heat and lightning. According to the Roman myth, it is thanks to Jupiter that we can enjoy it today: the god would in fact have thrown a thunderbolt near an oak tree, a tree sacred to him, and the truffle was born from the impact. Interesting because in fact the truffle is an hypogean fungus, that is, it grows underground and near trees that are particularly rich in water, including the oak, from which it draws nourishment and returns water and mineral salts to the plant, just like mushrooms do. But what does it look like? With an external cortex called "pridio" and an internal fleshy mass called "gleba".


Truffles in Umbria: which varieties?

Tuber terrae - scientific name of the truffle – needs soils particularly rich in nutrition, and Umbria has plenty of it. The varieties that are harvested in this region are about ten, from the rarest and most expensive to the cheapest: let's discover together some of the most interesting high quality truffles!


Precious Black Truffle

Let's start with him, the Precious Black truffle, known everywhere as the Norcia or Spoleto truffle. It is the prevailing quality in Umbria, widespread in the territories that flank the course of the Nera river and on the Spoleto mountains and on the Trevi and Subasio mountains, it is collected from November to March. It grows in limestone soils rich in clay and lives in symbiosis with oaks, holm oaks, beeches and chestnuts, at an altitude ranging from 250 to 1000 meters. But what makes this truffle so special? From the dimensions ranging from those of a walnut to those of an orange and with a rounded, often irregular shape, it is characterized by a black and wrinkled outer skin, but not angular. The black-purplish pulp, crossed by thin lighter veins, gives off an intense aroma, whose flavor is enhanced with cooking.


Scorzone (black summer truffle)

Also known as summer truffle, scorzone (Tuber aestivum) is a black truffle, whose nickname derives from its rough and particularly warty rind. It grows in sandy and clayey soils, deciduous forests and in some cases even in pine forests, and is harvested from May to December. What distinguishes it from the Nero Pregiato? 

● The external coating - of an intense black color - is more rounded and thick, and consists of large and hard pyramidal warts.

● The gleba, however, is clear: it can vary from shades of beige to ocher, up to hazelnut.

● The aroma and flavor, however, are the two elements that make the summer truffle. A scent with fruity notes - less intense and more delicate than that of other truffles - is released when it is eaten fresh or slightly heated, for example by grating it on a hot dish.

Black winter or hooked truffle

We conclude our journey to discover the black truffle in Umbria by talking about the black hooked truffle or also known as winter truffle or scorzone (Tuber Uncinatum Chatin). In fact, it is often confused with the summer truffle, since they have similar characteristics, in particular the warty outer part, but in reality, observing it carefully, differences are noticed. The warts are smaller and more accentuated than those of the scorzone, and the pulp has a darker color, almost chocolate brown and with whitish branched veins when ripe. Flavors and aromas are intense, with notes of hazelnut, porcini and parmesan, and for this reason it is excellent both raw and cooked, especially on risottos. Finally, the winter truffle has a higher price than the summer one due to the shorter ripening period.

But that's not all: Umbria is also home to some white varieties that deserve a taste!


White Truffle or Trifola

Not just black. Umbria, among its treasures, also offers white truffles, such as the well-known and rare Bianco Pregiato (Tuber Magnatum Pico) also called Trifola, which is harvested in the period between October and December, but in some more sheltered areas it is found up to all January. It grows mainly in the upper Tiber Valley, in the Eugubino Gualdese and in the Orvieto area, at a greater depth than other truffles and prefers higher trees such as poplars, willows, albacore, but also oaks, turkey oaks and hornbeams. The size of Bianco Pregiato varies from that of a small walnut to that of an orange and must be regular and rounded. Depending on its ripeness, the color of the pulp can vary from hazelnut to dark brown. But what distinguishes it are the sharp aroma and the incomparable flavor: cut into very thin slices and strictly raw, the truffle gives its best on dishes without sauces or other condiments to cover.


Bianchetto or Marzuolo truffle

Let's stay in the field of "white" truffles and meet the bianchetto or marzuolo truffle (Tuber borchii Vitt.), defined as "rustic", as compared to other more valuable truffles such as White or Black, it has lower prices. Harvested from January to April, it has the particularity of growing both in coastal and maritime areas and in mountain areas, up to 1000 meters above sea level because it adapts to live in symbiosis with pines but also with downy oaks, beeches and poplars. Smooth and light rind, with an equally light pulp with veins, tending more to white when young and more reddish when ripe: these are its characteristics. But how is it used in the kitchen? Perfect for flavoring and giving that extra boost to traditional homemade recipes, such as broths and first courses, for which a garlicky scent stands out.

 

If you are wondering where to taste these treasures of the earth, we have some tips for you! In the Montecorona Estate, in the "Abbazia di Montecorona" restaurant located inside the Abbey and managed by the well-known Samanta Girelli, you can taste the selection of truffles from the Urbani Tartufi area, which since 1852 has become a reference company in the truffle market worldwide. After a tasting of traditional dishes, you can stay in one of the double rooms and dedicate yourself to the discovery of this region, since the estate is located in Umbertide, a nerve center for reaching places such as Assisi and Perugia, both cities that offer a lot to visit. between art and history.​​​

 

 

Islands, Villages, and Natural Oases: here's what to see on Lake Trasimeno18/02/2024 23:00:00Islands, Villages, and Natural Oases: here's what to see on Lake Trasimenohttps://www.tenutedelcerro.it/en/estates/tenuta-di-montecorona/news/islands-villages-and-natural-oases-heres-what-to-see-on-lake-trasimenoAmong the things to see and do on Lake Trasimeno, we recommend visiting its islands and the numerous villages that dot its shores. Let's explore them.19/02/2024 10:41:37046255Fattoria del Cerro La Poderina Monterufoli Colpetrone Tenuta di Montecorona O' di Còlpetrone Pian di Seta Vermentino di Toscana Bio IGT Umbria is a region that continually aspx12htmlFalseaspx<img alt="" src="/it/PublishingImages/News/Trasimeno%20di%20notte.jpg" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />2024-02-18T23:00:00Z
Summer in Umbria: 10 experiences that you can live only in this beautiful region13/07/2023 22:00:00Summer in Umbria: 10 experiences that you can live only in this beautiful regionhttps://www.tenutedelcerro.it/en/estates/tenuta-di-montecorona/news/summer-in-umbria-10-experiences-that-you-can-live-only-in-this-beautiful-regionBy boat on the Trasimeno, or on the trail of Perugino: here are 10 experiences for your summer holidays in Umbria14/07/2023 07:44:38036082Fattoria del Cerro La Poderina Monterufoli Colpetrone Tenuta di Montecorona O' di Còlpetrone Pian di Seta Vermentino di Toscana Bio IGT Located in the heart of Italy, small but aspx430htmlFalseaspx<img alt="" src="/it/PublishingImages/News/Lago%20Trasimeno.jpeg" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />2023-07-13T22:00:00Z
Wine places: wineries and wine resorts in Umbria08/05/2023 22:00:00Wine places: wineries and wine resorts in Umbriahttps://www.tenutedelcerro.it/en/estates/tenuta-di-montecorona/news/wine-places-wineries-and-wine-resorts-in-umbriaHere are the cellars and wine resorts in Umbria where you can discover the authentic soul of the territory09/05/2023 15:18:25036084Fattoria del Cerro La Poderina Monterufoli Colpetrone Tenuta di Montecorona O' di Còlpetrone Pian di Seta Vermentino di Toscana Bio IGT The enchantment of nature, the colours aspx1577htmlFalseaspx<img alt="" src="/it/PublishingImages/News/Visual%20Montecorona.jpg" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />2023-05-08T22:00:00Z
Via Francigena in Tuscany: the most beautiful stages13/04/2023 22:00:00Via Francigena in Tuscany: the most beautiful stageshttps://www.tenutedelcerro.it/en/estates/tenuta-di-montecorona/news/via-francigena-in-tuscany-the-4-most-suggestive-stagesA guide to the most famous stages of the Tuscan Via Francigena, to find out how to travel them, what to visit and where to sleep09/05/2023 15:17:01037537Fattoria del Cerro La Poderina Monterufoli Colpetrone Tenuta di Montecorona O' di Còlpetrone Pian di Seta Vermentino di Toscana Bio IGT From Canterbury to Rome, the Eternal aspx9041htmlFalseaspx<img alt="" src="/it/PublishingImages/News/Montecorona%20dall%27alto8.jpg" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />2023-04-13T22:00:00Z
Umbria to be experienced on two wheels: here are the most beautiful itineraries to discover by motorbike or by bike30/03/2023 22:00:00Umbria to be experienced on two wheels: here are the most beautiful itineraries to discover by motorbike or by bikehttps://www.tenutedelcerro.it/en/estates/tenuta-di-montecorona/news/umbria-to-be-experienced-on-two-wheels-here-are-the-most-beautiful-itineraries-to-discover-by-motorbike-or-by-bikeFrom the Sagrantino road to the Tevere cycle path: here are our suggestions for discovering Umbria by motorbike or by bike31/03/2023 08:15:17036318Fattoria del Cerro La Poderina Monterufoli Colpetrone Tenuta di Montecorona O' di Còlpetrone Pian di Seta Vermentino di Toscana Bio IGT What better way to do this than on a aspx2503htmlFalseaspx<img alt="" src="/it/PublishingImages/News/Montone2.jpg" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />2023-03-30T22:00:00Z
Umbria: the essence of a region through its typical products02/03/2023 23:00:00Umbria: the essence of a region through its typical productshttps://www.tenutedelcerro.it/en/estates/tenuta-di-montecorona/news/umbria-the-essence-of-a-region-through-its-typical-productsFrom black truffles to extra virgin olive oil and wine: here are the typical products of Umbria to taste03/03/2023 09:44:12036707Fattoria del Cerro La Poderina Monterufoli Colpetrone Tenuta di Montecorona O' di Còlpetrone Pian di Seta Vermentino di Toscana Bio IGT It is known as the "green lung" of Italy aspx2638htmlFalseaspx<img alt="" src="/it/PublishingImages/News/Fioritura%20Castelluccio.jpg" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />2023-03-02T23:00:00Z
Wine quality: Tenute del Cerro certifies the management of its operating models16/02/2023 23:00:00Wine quality: Tenute del Cerro certifies the management of its operating modelshttps://www.tenutedelcerro.it/en/estates/tenuta-di-montecorona/news/wine-quality-tenute-del-cerro-certifies-the-management-of-its-operating-modelsNew quality certifications for Tenute del Cerro: let's get to know the new objectives achieved17/02/2023 10:12:36037845Fattoria del Cerro La Poderina Monterufoli Colpetrone Tenuta di Montecorona O' di Còlpetrone Pian di Seta Vermentino di Toscana Bio IGT We choose it carefully to create refined aspx2479htmlFalseaspx<img alt="" src="/it/PublishingImages/News/Certificazioni.jpg" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />2023-02-16T23:00:00Z
Montecorona olive oil and early harvest 2022: "the goal is to produce superior quality olive oil"08/11/2022 23:00:00Montecorona olive oil and early harvest 2022: "the goal is to produce superior quality olive oil"https://www.tenutedelcerro.it/en/estates/tenuta-di-montecorona/news/montecorona-olive-oil-and-early-harvest-2022-"the-goal-is-to-produce-superior-quality-olive-oil"The manager of the Montecorona estate, Stefano Belvisi, tells us why the early harvest of 2022 will bring a superior quality olive oil09/11/2022 09:22:01037487Fattoria del Cerro La Poderina Monterufoli Colpetrone Tenuta di Montecorona O' di Còlpetrone Pian di Seta Vermentino di Toscana Bio IGT Its production has its roots in aspx2609htmlFalseaspx<img alt="" src="/it/PublishingImages/News/Olio%20Montecorona1.jpg" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />2022-11-08T23:00:00Z
Innovative logistics for Tenute del Cerro wine: this is the technology that monitors the temperature24/10/2022 22:00:00Innovative logistics for Tenute del Cerro wine: this is the technology that monitors the temperaturehttps://www.tenutedelcerro.it/en/estates/tenuta-di-montecorona/news/innovative-logistics-for-tenute-del-cerro-wine-this-is-the-technology-that-monitors-the-temperatureHow does the new technology for monitoring wines shipped by Tenute del Cerro work? Interview with the Trade Marketing Manager Francesco Ceccarelli25/10/2022 12:54:38037544Fattoria del Cerro La Poderina Monterufoli Colpetrone Tenuta di Montecorona O' di Còlpetrone Pian di Seta Vermentino di Toscana Bio IGT Wine is an extremely delicate product aspx2574htmlFalseaspx<img alt="" src="/it/PublishingImages/News/Piantina%202.jpg" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />2022-10-24T22:00:00Z