If it’s summertime, that means loads of wonderful sagre, festivals, in Italy. Many sagre are food-related celebrations and festivals, but not all. But when it is food-related, you know that you’re going to eat well! Even the tiniest cities can have excellent sagre.
Case in point is the Sagra delle Fragole I went to in Fosseno, a little frazione of the city of Nebbiuno, high above Lago Maggiore in the Piedmont region. This sagra is not the only of its kind – there are many many strawberry festivals around Italy.
Every sagra has a special menu, and I love it when they are handwritten (they often are). Prices are bound to be lower and that means that you can indulge a bit more. In my case I got the risotto alle fragole, strawberry risotto and the fresh gelato and cut strawberries for after.
After ordering, we sat down and waited for our food to be delivered.
Let’s take a look at those strawberries! This one is almost ready to eat – as soon as it loses the slightly-white tip, it’s perfect. But you might sneak one or two even now, and they’d still taste great.
Risotto alle fragole, strawberry risotto. It’s not sweet aside from the taste of the strawberries. Not something I’d like to eat every day, but some people were going crazy for it. If you like subtle flavors, definitely try this. On the placemat, you can see the advertisement for the Sagra della Polenta in September in that area.
After the risotto, I got the fresh gelato, which was so fresh and creamy it was almost like fresh whipping cream but even better. This didn’t last very long.
After all that eating, you need a rest while you wait for more strawberries.
Something you’ll see in small towns everywhere: everyone works!
The sagra menu is a bit of distraction from the main event: buying crates and crates of strawberries to take home. Each crate was 15 euro, which is a decent price if you consider in Milan one of the 8 baskets in the crate would cost 3.50euro.
There aren’t only strawberries at the sagra – often there are booths selling other local-made goods or other products. Yum for salami!
More about Italian sagre:
- What’s a sagra? on About.com
- Rowena from Rubbah Slippers in Italy has been to 48 sagre so far (left-hand column nav)
- Sagre in Italia – the Italian sagre portal (in Italian) has a great search by region and type of festival
- The sagra of the Nodino – Mozzarella knot festival on my blog
- Sagre from Episode 4 on the Eye on Italy podcast w/ Leif Pettersen
nyc/caribbean ragazza says
Look at those strawberries!
Did you buy a crate?
This is amazing.. I really need to get over to see this… I cannot believe the strawberries .. look yummy!!
Frog Hollow Farm Girl says
A sweet hello from Frog Hollow Farm. This looks just wonderful. We have had fragolino, a light strawberry champagne or proseco when in Rome. Also a dessert with fragolini, tiny wild strawberries. Yum! Thanks for sharing such a great post! Ciao, bella!
erin :: the olive notes says
beautiful photos…and such a fun post. I just LOVE sagre. We just had the strawberry festivals in FL back in Feb/Mar…but I think I’d rather be in Italy eating the berries :)
Oh my those look fabulous! I just want to jump into the pictures. We are growing strawberries in our garden this year but ours are a tenth of the size of these but still so so sweet!
We also attend local sagras here in Lazio, but we do not have one for fragole. What a shame, also the best of the strawberry season is over in this region now.
This post and Wimbledon is making me wish it was not the case.
Jaime @ la vie...j'aime says
The risotto with strawberries sounds decadent!
Michael Tyson says
Hi Sara, I didn’t know that about the white tip on the strawberries! I had the most delicious strawberries I’ve every tasted when we went to a friend’s place for dinner in Padova. Strawberries, lemon and sugar – delicious!
I did so enjoy your post – and I do love strawberries! I’ve added you to my Top 10 this week
This Time Now says
Now, that guy can serve me strawberries anytime. What a face!
Really like your blog.
Felicia, This Time Now
OMG! 15 euro for a case of strawberries even OFF season here in Napoli would be highway robbery! I think the most I’ve ever paid for a case was around 7 euro! But then again, we don’t have awesome Strawberry Festas down here either, so I guess its a trade off…. LOVED the pictures and your post!
Sagre are the best! Gorgeous photos, both of the food and the people.
The Food Hunter says
Look at those strawberries. Great post
enjoyed the post as well! Now you are making me want to have some for dessert.
what gelato looks delicious!!!! I love all the strawberries!
I’m of an Australian of Italian descent and in two weeks we will be hosting an Italian exchange student. I loved reading through your recent posts getting a great feel of a foreigner’s perspective of living in Italy. Great blog, wonderful pics and very well written. I will be following!! Love it!
Ms. Adventures in Italy says
@nyc I didn’t get a crate, but took a few baskets from my friend’s crate :)
I think I could plan to skip around to Strawberry Festivals all summer…if only!
Great information here. We have been to several festivals around here, never dissapointed. I know what you mean about the strawberry risotto, particular, but good.
Thank you for your visit and comment. It means a lot.
Dear Sara, I love your blog! This is really great and you have many in common with me. I write about Tuscany… how about an exchange? I’m including you in my blogroll, if you have a banner, just send me teh code. Kind regards, Adriana.
i LOVE risotto di fragola and have so many fonds memories of cooking that with my Italian friend who learnt it from her grandmother in Naples. I tried two variations, with white wine which turns the risotto pink and discovered that actually red wine works better for presentation. Garnish with a spicy tongue numbing Sichuan pepper for that extra kick!
Texas girl says
My significant other and I plan to visit Italy mid May to mid June with the express intent of enjoying Nemi’s strawberry festival. I noticed that it typically seems to fall on the first weekend of June but last year it was the second weekend? Where can I find an official schedule to ensure we don’t miss it!? I was hoping to make this a day trip from Rome. Would you suggest otherwise?
I love your blog. I always do extensive research before we travel and you have been a wealth of information.