In Alba, Piedmont in Italy’s northwest, there is a tradition stretching back centuries of the truffle hunt. Today the Alba white truffle is sought after all over the world, fetching high prices at auction and served in the world’s fine finest restaurants.
There is a dark side to the Alba white truffle however. Intense competition among hunters has seen the practice of targeting dogs, laying out poison for dogs to eat, resulting in agonising slow deaths. The truffle’s natural habitat is under threat from the increased cultivation of wine and hazelnuts and the forest is disappearing.
Fine Dining Lovers ventured into the Alba forest before first light, guided by Trifolau, to unearth the stories behind this quasi-mystical tradition and its little-known dark underbelly.