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Garda con Gusto. What a gourmet experience!

by Isabelle Yrma Pace
Reading time 5 minutes

Garda con Gusto – Gourmet Experience is over but we still want to tell you about it. Because the good smell of freshly baked bread, coffee, sweet and savoury delights is still in the air together with the awareness that a holiday is also a moment of total immersion in the traditions and food and wine peculiarities of a place!

The scents of the woods and Mediterranean maquis that at Garda Trentino coexist in perfect balance, can be breathed in the open air but can also be enjoyed on your plate!

And this wonderful meeting of flavours between lake and mountain has always been the focus of Garda con Gusto – Gourmet Experience that we had the opportunity to appreciate during the fifth edition of the event held from 1st to 3rd November 2019.

We decided to experience the first day of this delicious event and the immersion in the scents and flavors of Garda Trentino was a love at first sight!

The Palavela in Riva del Garda, location of the event, wore for the occasion its most elegant dress with refinement and attention to detail.

The large pavilion welcomed us in a whirlpool of flavours and scents. The great novelty of this fifth edition was the corner dedicated to a great classic of the Belpaese: coffee. But that’s not all. At the Caffetteria Italiana the unmistakable aroma of coffee (by Omkafé) was combined with the scent of freshly baked croissants (by Panificio Moderno), to get off on the right foot in the morning. This corner of taste has then become the scene of another very Italian moment of the day: the aperitif! Here we sipped a great Trentino excellence, the Trentodoc bubbles! Then, very special cocktails by local professional bartenders who, for the occasion, had the opportunity to collaborate with exceptional chefs during the Show Cooking Aperitivi di Gusto such as the starred Peter Brunel who recently opened a high-class restaurant at Garda Trentino; Sebastian Sartorelli, young and talented chef of Hosteria Toblino and Danilo D’Ambra, of the Johnson & Dipoli Restaurant in Egna (Bz).

But the great chefs were already “warming up their engines”, the amusing sound of oil – rigorously extra virgin from Garda Trentino, the northernmost oil in the world – in the pan accompanied the other culinary melodies in a perfect synergy of notes.

Culinary shows, tastings, meetings with international chefs and local producers, tastings and gourmet shopping at the Palavela in Riva del Garda. The days at Garda con Gusto – Gourmet Experience are marked by a non-stop rhythm to the sound of discoveries for the palate, sight, touch and taste. All the senses are involved, without exception.

After buying the ever-present and delicious Panettone with Garda Trentino extra virgin olive oil and the PDO plum of Dro from Agraria di Riva for a special Christmas, we begin to be hungry… the first Cooking Show is about to start! All ready for the first great protagonists of the inauguration day: Alfio Ghezzi, the famous chef from Trentino already awarded with two Michelin stars, flanked by another chef from Trentino Matteo Delvai, a very young talent already awarded as best Italian student of Hotelier Institutes. Their hands are moving wisely and make everything seem so easy!

It is up to them to serve the first creations of this food and wine journey to discover the true excellence of Lake Garda Trentino: the De.Co. carne salada, the broccoli of Torbole, the lake fish and above all carpione (the carp), the native fish of Lake Garda, the great protagonist of this edition.

We decide to continue our gastronomic itinerary also because there are so many proposals. The local producers and restaurateurs involved are the Macelleria Bertoldi and the restaurant l’Ora in Riva del Garda, the Macelleria Cis and the Osteria La Torre, Coop and the restaurant Antiche Mura, Pregis and the restaurant La Casina, Troticoltura Armanini and the restaurant Alfio di Dro, the Farms of Trentino and the vegan restaurant Officina Verde. Each reality represents a Salotto del Gusto, one for every gourmet experience.

And, to end in sweetness, each salon presented a dessert by the great Pastry Chef Loretta Fanella, a dessert artist, who dedicated a colour to each experience using 0 km products.

Class, elegance, very high quality. This event condensed in itself many factors giving life to a great “show” of taste told by Eleonora Cozzella, critic and gastronomic journalist.

Other great names followed in this long three days: from the chef of the two Michelin stars Gennaro Esposito to Filippo Sinisgalli, from Il Palato Italiano, Executive Chef of the most famous Hollywood stars from Valeria Raciti, winner of Masterchef Italia 2019, to Josef Steffner, representing the YRE(Young Restaurateurs of Europe).

Great names, great excellence, great emotions, top level quality. Living the Garda gourmet experience with Gusto makes you feel the protagonist together with famous chefs and wonderful products of Mother Nature. And this is how a holiday at Garda Trentino will acquire, it has to be said, another flavour! See you next year! The appointment will take place from October 30th to November 1st, 2020!

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