2 MINUTE READ
A behind-the-scenes look at four days of bubbly, heroic vineyards and cycling.
Words by Miriam | Photograhphy by Miriam | Styling by Beatrice
30 March 2023
If BikeandTaste is the perfect fusion of food, territory and cycling, there can be no more suitable place than the UNESCO World Heritage hills to spend a spring of discovery. These days were a sparkling mix of evocative cycling routes, fairytale scenery, excellent wines, walks surrounded by nature and many new friends.
Here is our Veneto trip amidst photos – many, many photos – hearty snacks, fine bubbles and enchanting scenery.
Thursday – Marshmallows around the fire
Patrizia and I arrive at the base in almost perfect synchrony with Beatrice, who is already projected towards one of the things she does best: preparing every single detail so that guests feel welcome wherever BikeandTaste is. They arrive just before dinner, just in time for the first real toast of the long weekend. We start with a classic: Prosecco, which has made the history of these hills, now famous throughout the world.
Ai Cadelach is a place that seems to be made for pampering oneself with good food and good wine. On the counter stands even a mega jar with marshmallows already on sticks. Probably everyone would like to go upstairs right now, sit around the fire in the cold spring evening and tell each other a few stories – which Paolo Bettini is used to doing just as well as when he goes on the attack.
Friday – Impossible roads lead to wonderful places
As the others ascend by half a dirt track to the Sanctuary of Collagù – ably recommended by a local – it occurs to us that not even at the Strade Bianche does one get to ‘eat’ so much dust. This place does not look like a solemn religious place, but rather like a small mountain church, overlooking a sea of silent hills. The weather does not promise anything good, but lunch does! The starter, inspired by the snack of the peasants who started to work at dawn in the vineyards, is something to satiate you until the evening, were it not that jumping up and down from the car boot almost feels like a session at the gym. And this is the right time for a special mention to our level-headed driver, Matteo Busato.
The drive back to the hotel turns out to be more complicated than expected after the huge cake, but nothing compared to the mountain road leading to the agriturismo where Marzio Bruseghin has found his spiritual dimension, surrounded by his donkeys – and a view that is far from bad.
After a well-deserved praise to Patrizia’s car – which at this point has seen its fair share – we can toast once again to a successful day. As cars illuminate the black, uninhabited hillside at times, it is easy to think that the lessons of cycling are indeed endless: many winding roads lead to an unforgettable finish.
Saturday – Set an extra place at the table
A bit like food and good wine, cycling brings everyone together. Roberto, his family and Athos – a German shepherd as beautiful as a summer day – open their home at the foot of Montello for a coffee break that includes wine, Martini sandwiches stuffed as if it were Christmas, brioche, cheese, olives and a thousand other things that I cannot remember. Feeling welcome is a feeling we all love; when it happens far from home it is almost magical.
Sunday – Prosecco, Grappa and Ghent Wevelgem
There is a vineyard in the centre of Valdobbiadene that produces an excellent Prosecco Superiore DOCG, and this is the final key moment of our ride: a full-blown tasting where we are guided through the flavours, aromas and even the size of the bubbles. The final treat? A reserve caramel-coloured grappa. Fede links up with live Ghent – otherwise what a Sunday is it? – and in this we are more Italian than the Italians themselves.
An espresso on the fly, a few cases of wine in the car so as not to break the habit, and see you next time.
Would you also like to try a unique experience combining sport, food and territory?
Take a look at BikeandTaste‘s proposals for June and September. We are sure you will find the right adventure for you!