Gourmet and Culture Experience in Istria

With fine wine, artisanal olive oil, local prosciutto ham, organic meats, fresh seafood and that gourmet aphrodisiac jewel, “The Truffle”, experience a made to order culinary vacation. The carefully selected restaurant experiences are ones that will show the most wonderful side of local farm or sea to table cuisine in breathtaking locations that rival Italy. Your experience will be enhanced by Ivan, your own licensed tour guide with an art and cultural history background. He is experienced as a sommelier, olive oil and truffle tasting guide and worked as a regional CNBC Asia news correspondent and knows how to tell a story and present it in a memorable way. This program includes all land transportation from Venice Airport or Trieste railway station and to all tours, sightseeing and dining. Breakfast is included daily with 4 dinners, numerous wine, olive oil and truffle tastings all accompanied by local treats and snacks and guided cultural walking tours with free time for shopping, exploring and photography.

 

Nautica Hotel – For One (Dbl Occ)

This hotel grants absolute comfort with the latest technology, first class service, experienced English-speaking staff in this dream of a hotel. Nautica Hotel is located in the charming, historical little town of Novigrad with exceptional monuments of cultural and historical heritage. Each of the designer bedrooms evoke the atmosphere of a luxurious sea cabin on-board an old sailing ship. All rooms are fitted with LCD television, mini bar, safe, air conditioning with in-room controls, mosaic bathroom and a terrace with a magnificent view of the sea and old part of the town. The wellness center is comprised of an indoor pool, children’s pool, Turkish bath, Finnish sauna, whirlpool and aroma showers with the essence of pine and mango. Indulge in chocolate, hot stone, anti-cellulite and classic massages, as well as other treatments designed for the body and face. This will become your quiet harbor with the fragrance and the sound of sea from your balcony. A full breakfast buffet is served daily in the dining room or on the marina deck.

 

Round Trip Transfers | Welcome Seafood Dinner

You will be greeted at Venice Airport or Trieste Train station with a private car and driver that will take you to your hotel. On the way, experience a one hour stop in the beautiful peninsula city of Piran, Slovenia. Piran is a photographer’s dream and the perfect way to start your first moments in Istria. Hotel Nautica is one of the most luxurious hotels on the Adriatic. There is plenty of time to settle into your room with a view and take a walk on the dock before the welcome dinner at Hotel Nautica’s own Restaurant Navigare. You’ll find an exceedingly elegant and refined interior. The menu is predominantly based on the fresh seafood ingredients as seen in their awe-inspiring dishes. Make sure that you have your camera as this is the beginning of your gastronomic experience.

 

Babic Olive Oil Tasting | Kabola Wine Tasting

Istrians press their organic olive oils from young fruit, which lends it a distinctly green aroma and hue. They are spicy and lend themselves to so many Croatian dishes. Be surprised by the wonderful flavor of fresh strawberries and honey with olive oil drizzled on top! A visit to one of the leading Istrian olive oil producers voted amongst 500 top olive oil producers in the world and enjoy tasting the oils with light snacks. The Babic family owns a state-of-the art olive oil processing facility. Their tasting room overlooks entire production line and it is an excellent chance to see first-hand how olive oil is made. Perhaps you will learn the proper technique of olive oil tasting if you don’t already know. Don’t miss the chance to purchase this olive oil at discounted prices. The Kabola winemakers are famous for various styles of malvasia, typical local grape varietal, and a special type of moscatto, as well as their recent innovation with the application of ancient winemaking technique devised in Caucasian Georgia. After being picked, grapes are put immediately into terracotta amphorae, sealed and put to ferment in the soil. Wine demands the freshness of the underground and it desires peace. Though the shorter or longer maceration in oak barrels and amphorae, the grapes gain particular dimensions. The wine produced in amphorae are the crown of the work.

 

Groznjan Medieval City Tour | Kozlovic Wine Tasting

The medieval little city of Groznjan is of great cultural significance, not only to Croatia but also internationally. Every summer the town becomes an artistic beehive as it opens the academies for young people with dance, music and drama workshops and the International Music Youth, Summer Jazz and Movie Academy. Several dozens of artists live in this city all year around and their studios welcome visitors. The Kozlovic Wine Estate, hosts an afternoon wine tasting. From generation to generation the love of wine making has been passed on to this day and the Kozlovic Winery has become a tradition in itself and one of top destination in Istria’s world of wine. This winery is renowned for arguably the best Moscattos (typical sweet varietal in Istria). Their recent experiment with Malvazija aged in Acacia barrels instead of oak gains more and more followers.

 

Traditional Country Inn Dinner Stari Podrum

After a busy day, the timing is perfect to sit down and relax with Aunt Mira’s home cooking. Enjoy the beautiful Istrian scenery on the way from Momjam. The restaurant is a hidden gem in a valley by a steam, both a paradise for the eyes and the taste buds. Enjoy home-made items featuring soups, pasta with truffles and beef tagliatelle with arugula or whatever is the special of the day. This will be an outstanding food memory of the trip

 

Rossi Grappa and Wine Estate | Porec Walking Tour

Winemakers since 1885, the current generation of Rossi family producing wines is the fourth. They cultivate their vines overlooking the Adriatic on land that combines country and coastline in a gentle sweeping vista. In Istria Marino Rossi’s name is also synonymous with stunning organic herbal Istrian grappa: honey infused Medenica, mistletoe infused Biska or monovarietal grappa made from Yellow Muscat. Rossi Grappa and Wine Estate vineyards sit high on the hills overlooking the River Mirna Valley. The wind from the not so distant sea rolls in and hits all of mountains creating a unique microclimate. The tour continues to Porec as your guide takes you through the ancient quarter of the city where Roman architectural layout is still clearly visible and beautifully blends with Venetian gothic palazzos. Visit St. Euphrasius basilica, 6th Century Byzantine style church, inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage list. This evening there will be time for you to enjoy dinner on your own in Porec. Your guide will give you some great restaurant suggestions.

 

Medieval Motovun Walking Tour | Tomaz Wine Tasting

Motovun is the medieval city at the top of the hill overlooking Mirna river valley with breathtaking views from the city walls. The city holds much historical significance as you will learn from your expert tour guide. The US Formula 1 champion Mario Andretti was born here and the Czech engineer Josef Ressel lived in Motovun while testing his invention, the propeller, at Mirna river. Motovun International Film Festival awards the winner with a Golden Propeller of Motovun award. An afternoon wine tasting will be held at the Tomaz Estate famous for Malvazija wine aged in Mulberry barrels.

 

Honey, Beekeeping & Honey Based Cosmetic Products

The Jankovic family exclusively adopts the migratory method of beekeeping in Langstroth type of beehives that are spread along the Mirna River Valley in central Istria. In the tasting room as well as the shop in of city of Livade, gourmet aficionados can taste various types of honeys such as acacia, linden-tree, lavender, chestnut and meadow herbs infused honey. Also offered are various types of flavored honeys, honey based organic cosmetic products and honey infused grappa called Medica. You will also learn about the history of beekeeping and various types of hives that were used in the past.

 

Zigante Truffle Based Dinner

One of the few places outside Italy that grows the tuber magnatum pico – the world’s costliest at $4,500 a kilogram, Istrian forests are rich in black and white varieties. The world’s leading exporter, Zigante Tartufi, discovered the world’s largest truffle here in 1999. At 1.31 kilograms, it made The Guinness Book of World Records. A truffle based (white truffle based September – November) dinner will introduce you to the delights of this gold! Nowadays, the truffle holds an irreplaceable position in world gastronomy and the best world restaurants rely on its simplicity and powerful attractiveness in creating their menus. But how many of them could boast with the fact that this precious mushroom grows in the untouched nature just outside their courtyard? Restaurant Zigante in Livade is surely one of the rare. During the entire calendar year, it offers a unique, carefully designed white and black truffle based menu. Before dinner you will have an opportunity to visit next Zigante Delicatessen Shop, just next door. Giancarlo Zigante is considered an Istrian ‘King of Truffles’ but the family also produces high end quality olive oil and wine. Apart from fresh truffles, both white and black, many truffle based products are available for purchase at this shop including various other wine, spirits, olive oil and gourmet delicacies from the region as well as from the rest of Croatia and Slovenia.

 

Chiavalon Olive Oil Tasting

The Chiavalon Olive Oil Estate is one of the leading Istrian olive oil producers voted amongst 500 top olive oil producers in the world. The love for olive trees grew with each visit to the olive oil orchard of Sandy’s grandfather, where he became fascinated by its slow growth, its beauty and the gift it gives after all the hard work. When the grandfather fell ill, there was nobody left to cultivate the orchard, so while his boyhood peers were playing games and racing their bikes, Sandy’s goals were to learn each and every fact regarding the beautiful tree and to produce olive oil that would make the family happy. It takes quite a long time for an olive tree to bear fruit, thus only today we can see the results of that work. The entire Chiavalon family strives and guarantees with its name that the olive oil that reaches you shall be of the utmost quality and the best one you have ever tasted. This tasting will change the way you think about olive oil and it will begin a love affair with this liquid gold. Special olive oil tasting glasses bring out all the best in the Chiavalon oils.

 

Pula Walking Tour

You will be astounded during this walking tour of historical downtown with a visit to Arena (Roman Colliseum). Your guide will open up your mind to the culture and deep history of this magical town. Pula is the largest town on the peninsula and offers a diversity of attractions to lovers of culture, thanks to the richness of its three thousand year old history, where every step takes you back through the years. The central attraction is the Roman amphitheatre, one of only six preserved in the world. Walk inside and follow the paths of the gladiators. While strolling through Pula, you will come across numerous monuments of Roman architecture: the Triumphal Arch of the Sergi dynasty from the 1st century B.C., Hercules’ Gate and Twin Gates, the Temple of Augustus, Arena and Small Roman Theatre in the town center. Lunch would be on your own.

 

Dobravac Wine Tasting | Rovinj Coastal Tour

The sun-drenched quality of Istrian land ensures an exceptional treat, which every wine lover can enjoy. The Dobravac family cellars offer 6 wine labels which are holders of many honors and awards. Rovinj is the pearl of the Adriatic; beautiful, idyllic and breathtaking are just a few words to describe this magnificent city. Feel the enchantment of the town in its narrow medieval streets and warm Mediterranean setting. From the plateau of St. Euphemia Basilica there is a wonderful view of the open sea and numerous islets in the distance. It remains one of the last true Mediterranean fishing ports. After your guided tour, there is free time to explore the streets and romantic views. Relax at the Piassa Granda wine and cocktail bar or visit Kantinon traditional inn for lunch on your own.

 

Restaurant Blu: Farewell Dinner

You will arrive in time to watch one of the most beautiful sunsets you have ever seen. Blu is an award winning classy restaurant at a hideout directly at the sea overlooking panorama of Rovinj. You will enjoy high end creative Mediterranean seafood cuisine listening to the waves and enjoying the sweet smell that gentle Mistral wind brings from the pine wood that surrounds the restaurant. Top quality service in a relaxed atmosphere with delicious food will be a fitting farewell to your new gastronomic destination.