Mentioned among the list of villages in I Borghi più belli d’Italia, it has been almost 4 years since we made a quick stopover in Varese Ligure to seek out local artisan Piero Picetti and his much talked about corzetti stamps. Back then, the stamps seemed to be experiencing a sort of revival, and I, as with other cooking blogs and foodies in-the-know, was all caught up in glorifying the round wooden tools to a level of must-have gadgets for the gourmet cook.
Jump forward to 2014. An overnight stay earlier this month proved just how much we missed on that initial visit years ago. Varese Ligure might be small enough to see in 10 minutes tops, but having the luxury to explore it in the evening and then again in the daytime brought new perspective to a place that I thought famous only for a traditional pasta tool. Enjoy the tour!
Ponte di Grecino from several angles. Built in 1515 after heavy rainfall demolished the only footbridge that connected Grecino quarter to the main village. A low overhead tunnel from Grecino’s side of the Crovana stream leads to the ponte.
The beginning of May must be a slow period because there was no problem securing a room at Albergo Amici on such short notice. The hotel also houses a well-reputed restaurant (Slow Food, Routard, Michelin) and we devoured our plates of corzetti in a delicious pine nut sauce. Excellent, as was “Il Musaico”, an intense ruby red wine (70% Dolcetto, 30% Barbera grapes) from local producer Bisson.