Alba White Truffle Tour
The tour begins with an introduction about what a truffle is and how and where it grows and why. It is interesting that in the Langhe there are about 4 different species of White Truffle, only two of which are edible and there are about 10 species of Black Truffle. The black truffle however are truffles that you can find in every season. Which makes them less expensive and also they are much easier to find. But with that said, they are equally delicious as the white, only thing that is different is that the back truffle taste is very earthy the word umami is the best way to describe the taste of the black truffle. The white truffle on the other hand is more aromatic and the perfumes of these truffles are much more delicate, making them even harder to find the best quality truffles with the stronger more aromatic tastes.
In Alba two months out of the year there is a festival dedicated to the Alba White Truffle that will take place every year in October and also in November. While this festival brings tourists in from all over the world in these months, it is best to keep in mind that for the best quality truffles, the cooler weather and the wetter late summer early autumn the better. Why? Because the cold helps to keep in the white truffles their full aromatics, it also encourages these little treasures to grow deeper into the ground thus making them more and more concentrated in flavor.
There are several different species of truffles that grown in the Langhe, Piemont area and the white truffle are the most expensive and most sought after in the world.
Different species of White Truffles
White Truffle - Tuber Magnatum Pico
Bianchetto Truffle - Tuber Albinum Pico
How to cook with the white truffles
Being a very delicate truffle that you want to make sure you get all the aromatics out of it, the dishes that I highly recommend with white truffles are, Tajarin (typical egg pasta) with a butter sauce. Or just an over easy egg cooked in butter, never oil as you don’t want to cover the flavors of the white truffle. Something for the more adventurous eater is carne cruda (beef tartar with no sauce) with white truffles shaved on top, trust me its amazing.
If you want to be able to bring home some truffles I recommend finding a good truffle butter and what I like to do is take a grissini (breadstick) smear a bit of the truffle butter on one end, then roll a nice piece of Prosciutto crudo over this, and you have a fun snack that will pair amazingly with some Barolo or Barbaresco wines.
Different species of Black Truffles
Summer Trufle - Tuber Aestivum
Moscato Truffle - Tuber Brumale
How to cook with the black truffles:
The black truffles unlike the white truffles benefit from a bit more heat. So what I like to do is add them to the dish at the end and with about 10 seconds of cooking time. Some dishes that go great with black truffles are, ok now the American is going to come out here, but a nice juicy hamburger, no cheese just black truffles and bacon. I know, but I am not leading you in the wrong direction. Now we go back to being more traditional Piedmontese and you can have a nice risotto dish with parmesan cheese and once the cheese has melted in the pan, shave over the black truffles and cook for about a half of a minute.
If you get the butter with black truffles or a pate made with them you can add some of this to mash potatoes, this will bring the potatoes to another level, and be a great side for a roast chicken.
Want to be a part of a real Truffle Hunt?
I can arrange for you to go on a real truffle hunt. The Truffle tour will last about 2 hours with scenic views of the Alta Langa hills as well as the Barolo area. This hunt takes place in the woods but before, we will have the chance to stop by some hazelnut groves to check and see if there are some black truffles growing there too. From there we will head into the woods in search of the Black and White truffles (when in season). Hunting for white or black truffles involves walking on paths which can be slippery, muddy and occasionally steep: therefore, it is highly recommended to wear trekking boots or sporty shoes, that can handle some mud.
Alba White Truffle Activities
Truffle & Wine tasting
Typical Truffle Lunch
Visits to Historical Towns
Shopping for Truffle products
Your Truffle experience is waiting.
Let me plan your next adventure in Langhe searching for the worlds most sacred truffles.