About 65 km south of Milan and only 30 of Pavia at the foothills of the Apennines the Oltrepò Pavese stretches out her vineyards, woods and meadows. A landscape reminiscent of Tuscany, with smooth hills, medieval castles, ancient villages and panoramic views.
Though being the largest wine producing region of Lombardy and one of the largest of the whole of Italy, the name Oltrepò Pavese hardly rings a bell with anyone. It is still undiscovered territory, tranquil and traditional, as if time has forgotten to touch this area.
The Oltrepò Pavese may easily (and should) be visited on a day trip from Milan, for example on a Sunday, when restaurants in the big city are closed, whereas in the countryside the traditional Sunday lunch, il pranzo di domenica, is served. An experience not to be missed! If you manage to find the place, the lunch at Azienda Agrituristica Bagarellum is the top of the bill.
The best way to discover the area is to tour around and visit some of the sights, such as:
- the monastery of San Alberto di Butrio
- the medieval city of Varzi
- Zavatarello and it's castle
- the Penice pass
- the botanical garden in the beautiful Romagnese area
- the Monte Alpe nature reserve.
You' ll be surprised by how quiet it is and by the spectacular panoramic views
along the way.
Don't forget to visit a cantina
to taste some of the wines that are typical of the region: Bonarda, Barbera, Buttafuoco, Sangue di Giuda, Pinot Nero, Riesling
and the Spumante
's. Some of the possibilities (there are over 100 wine producers in the area) are: Travaglino, La Versa
, or on a small scale: San Michele ai Pianoni