From September to December, Tuscany offers a myriad of events showcasing top seasonal foods: fresh olive oil, mushrooms, chestnuts, white truffles, dried figs and squids! Here are some of the best events scheduled in Tuscany, year after year.
Chestnut festival in Marradi (Firenze area)
Street bands and plenty of food including local delicacies such as ravioli, cakes, jams, marrons glacés, and roasted chestnuts. Lovers of steam trains can also arrive in the old train that connects Florence to Marradi. More info (in Italian) in the website of the local association promoting culture and tourism.
Crastatone festival in Piancastagnaio (Siena area)
The Monte Amiata area offers an extensive calendar of chestnut festivals. The oldest is the Crastatone, which is filled with traditional dishes, music and dancing in the streets, reliving the atmosphere of an authentic rural village.
The festival takes place within the town’s medieval city walls, the Rocca Aldobrandesca, which encircle the old town centre. Food stalls are set up in the streets and alleyways, serving food made from chestnuts. Visit the website of Piancastagnaio’s association promoting local culture.
Chestnut festival in Caprese Michelangelo (Arezzo area)
Caprese Michelangelo, the birthplace of Michelangelo Buonarroti, host every year the local Chestnut Festival. On the streets of the old town and in the square of the Castle overlooking the village, visitors can taste and buy roasted chestnuts, mulled wine, donuts, jams and sweet chestnut polenta. More info about the Chestnut festival in Caprese Michelangelo, here.
At Volterragusto you can taste and buy not only local white truffles, but also wine, oil, meat, cheese and crafts. A very interesting cheese rolling race called the Palio dei Caci Volterrani is held beyond the market, where contestants will attempt to tumble a wheel of cheese down the slope of a street in the shortest amount of time possible. Visit the website of Volterragusto.
Mostra Mercato Nazionale Tartufo Bianco di San Miniato (Pisa area)
San Miniato gears up to host the annual white truffle fair. Here the total annual harvest is about 80 tons annually (25% of the national total annual harvest). Find out here more info about the White truffle fair in San Miniato (Pisa).
Mostra Mercato del Tartufo Bianco delle Crete Senesi (San Giovanni d’Asso)
On the second and third week end of November San Giovanni d’Asso will host the famous White Truffle Fair. You will find kiosks and restaurants selling countless specialties made with truffles and accompanied by the best wines: from Brunello di Montalcino to Champagne. The programme includes also cooking shows, a Pecorino cheese competition, special dinners and many many tastings. Find out here more info about the Mostra Mercato del Tartufo Bianco.
WINE, SQUIDS AND FIGS
Boccaccesca in Certaldo (Florence area)
A festival to honour the famous poet Giovanni Boccaccio, with cooking shows, street food, markets, wine tastings and educational children’s workshops on the streets of one of Italy’s most beautiful towns. More info about Boccaccesca on the official website.
Dried fig fest or Benvenuto Fico Secco in Carmignano (Prato area)
Sweet and soft with a slight taste of anise, dried fig from Carmignano is famous across the country for its organoleptic attributes and its ancestral and natural drying technique. Since December 1, 2001, Dried Fig from Carmignano has become a Slow Food “Presidia.” The official public opening of sales of Carmignano’s dried figs is celebrated every third Sunday of October with a big festival with cooking shows, contests, markets and workshops in the charming town. Have a look on the website of Carmignano’s tourist information office for more info.
The Squid fest in Capraia or Sagra del Totano (Capraia island)
On Capraia Island, summer season ends in November with the squid fest (Sagra del Totano). Hundreds of people land on the island to taste the specialty squid-based foods, such as pasta, polenta, crêpes and much more. More info here.