A glorious time to travel in Italy, the grapes are under harvest, the summer heat is over and Italians have returned home from their seaside holidays. The season subtly changes and olives are ripening, chestnuts, too, and after the first falls of rain, well worn mushrooming baskets are retrieved from the cantina and mushroom hunters venture into the forests at dawn, the earth is still warm, and the rains bring porcini mushrooms up, and the truffles grow underground.
In Autumn 2017 I’m travelling into chestnut territory during one of the major chestnut harvests. Its a fun festival, there will be plenty of long wooden ladders propped against huge branches hanging low with ripe chestnuts, and beneath the trees, scatterings of the first to fall, and the braziers already smoking. Lunch of chestnut pasta is aromatic and delicious, and so is turkey with chestnuts and honey!