Diano d’Alba is a small town set in the heart of the Langhe area of Piedmont and the surrounding countryside is straight out of a painting: hills, rows of vines and fields of crops greet you wherever you look, soothing the soul of everyone who goes there.
Learn more about Langhe’s ancient traditions by visiting the many medieval castles that have towered over the hills for centuries, or seek out the old tools used by country folk in years gone by, such as the wooden ploughs, yokes for the oxen and gig wheels that today’s inhabitants of Diano now proudly display in their homes and shops to show off their roots. Having quenched your need for culture, give your taste buds a treat and head to the historic town centre and try the local bunet, a delicious dessert made from chocolate and macaroons.
The Langhe area is one of the natural marvels of Piedmont. Don’t be fooled by the area’s apparent air of tranquillity as there are so many things to see and taste that you won’t have time to get bored.
Practically every slope on every hill around every town is covered with vines so it’s perfect walking country. They produce some of the world’s very finest wines, such as Barolo and Barbaresco. Wine is almost a religion in the Langhe area: so pay tribute to the grape gatherers and their traditions by tucking into their favourite snack, soma d’aj.
Asti: Economy and culture both revolve around wine in this splendid corner of Piedmont. The true wealth of the Asti area lies in the white Muscat grape, which is used to make one of the world’s most famous sweet wines and the perfect accompaniment for a slice of the finest castagnaccio.
Stroll by the ancient building in Asti’s elegant historic centre, and take time to sample the delectable temptations in its lavish patisseries. If you happen to be in Asti on the third Sunday in September, make sure you don’t miss the traditional medieval Palio, a sort of horse race combined with a costume parade that will take you on a real trip back through time.
Bunet is a traditional chocolate pudding from the Langhe area in Piedmont. If you want to throw a dinner party for your friends, this is the very best dessert to round off the meal: it’s easy to make and all the ingredients are just as easy to find.