Events, exhibitions, events introducing the lovers of taste towards the discovery of local products made in artisan way, by promoting knowledge of the area biellese through its flavors.
The Biellese is rich in cheeses, one of the best known of which is toma, a hard cheese made of cows' milk that has along Alpine tradition. It is produced using full-cream (Maccagno) or partially skimmed milk, and also the cheeses of the Biellese valleys are protected by a D.O.C. mark of the Piedmont Region. Beddu, a cheese made of skimmed milk that is as wide as toma but only two fingers high, is typical of the area around Pralungo: it is eaten fresh or after being matured on straw. The fresh cheeses are characterized by their quality and variety (sordevolo, ricotta, tumin), and this is also true of the goat cheeses, be they fresh, mature or variously flavoured.
The most widespread in the territory are the 'salam' d the ula, ie stored in fat, made with pork, salt, pepper and sometimes red wine. Typical are the "salam 'd vaca", ie beef, the "salam d'asu with donkey meat and meat goats.
More localized production of "salam 'd potato", which are added all'impasto boiled potatoes and a little blood, or "shovel Coggiola, a shoulder of ham flavored with salt and pepper, wrapped in the bladder and dried at 'air. Cheeses and sausages are available in specialized shops, weekly markets and village festivals.
Torcetti, "paste 'd melia" (made of cornflour) and "turcetùn" (large torcetti made using a less rich pastry) are still produced according to traditional recipes by some confectioners (particularly in Andorno, Pollone and Biella). The confectioners of Biella and Cossato make canestrelli (fragrant wafers made of chocolate and hazelnuts). At Crevacuore, it is possible to find home-made "canestrej", which are chocolate wafers cooked between the plates of a red-hot grill and prepared according to a recipe that dates back to the XVII century.
HONEY AND FRUITS MUSTARDS
The large variety of blossoms in the area make it possible to choose from among a wide range of honeys, the most common of which are acacia, chestnut, linden, rhododendron, dandelion and mountain flower. In the Biellese, as well as being used as a sweetener, honey is traditionally served with polenta. During the course of village markets and festivals, it is still possible to find apple and grape mustards, which are prepared by slowly boiling the fruit (sometimes for more than 12 hours) in order to create a thick, dark syrup to accompany boiled meats, fresh cheese, polenta and paletta.
WATER, WINE, BEER AND LIQUEURS
The mineral waters of the Biellese are famous for their exceptional lightness (the Lauretana mineral water, low in mineral content, today is the heir of an ancient hydrotherapeutic tradition), but there is also no lack of wine, including some well-known D.O.C.; Biella is also the home of Menabrea, one of the best lagers in the world, and of a few delicious craft beers. Finally, particular mention should be made of Ratafià di Andorno, a drink made of wild cherries steeped in alcohol according to a 500-year-old recipe.
A curiosity: vermut, a liqueur wine today object of rediscovery, was invented by a Biellese: Antonio Benedetto Carpano, distiller and herbalist born in Bioglio, in 1786 transformed a medicine into an aperitif destined to be a great success at the court of Savoy and throughout Piedmont.