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Slow living in Piedmont

We meet Yvonne with her dog in the middle of Dogliani, a little village 15 minutes south of Barolo. Before we met Yvonne we had already found the key to our apartment (linking the apartment) with some help of the neighbors (really all people in this village are so kind and helpful) making us immediately feel part of this little community here. Yvonne who is orginally from Austria, seemed to blend in with this village as she was always meant to live here. From the first moment we felt an instant click with her due to her enthusiasm and Italian sprezzatura. 

Yvonne is the mastermind behind the cultural association Serafino. She loves the country life and creative people and like Plinius she is also very caring with her environment. Serafina shares the idea that going on a vacation should not be all about consuming but also about contributing to the local community by immersing yourself in the charming and, in many places, still wonderfully traditional way of life of the Piemontese.

And o gosh how we love this way of Piemontese life! It's like people know what life is about. They all seem to have all the time in the world; in the morning the whole village (well at least all old men) are drinking coffee together at 'Bar Stazione' (linking to guide)  this place doesn't deserve a price for its esthetics,  but it screams Italy and we loved starting our day her with ‘due cappuchini’. 

A few hours later people move up their way to the square of the village and meet over aperitivo at Casarico. This is the perfect spot for lunch/aperitivo or for a simple glass of good wine.  We went for a glass of Nebbiolo from Podere Luigi Einaudi, which is located just outside the village of Dogliani and was started by the first president of Italy, Luigi Einaudi. Now it is ran by his great grandson. 

A bit later we also got to try the wine that Yvonne produces. The grapes grow around Villa Boccardia and Yvonne's creative winemaker friends Gianfranco Alessandria and Mauro Veglio produces an amazing Pinot Nero.  Every year Yvonne invites a graphic designer to stay at her house for a couple of weeks and to design the labels of their wine. The environment shapes the result and the contact with the people who live and work here. Every year the work together with like minded creatives and restaurateurs with the same vision. See the result of last year wine here: 

Oh how nice to be able to spend a couple of weeks here. Time passes by so slowly. It is easy to just wander around the little villages and let the day pass by, while your just nibbling on some food and drinking great coffees/wines. 

But restless Dutchies as we are, we decided to explore the environment by bike! We rented electrical mountainbikes at Bikes4langhe (see our Piedmont guide) and while climbing up those mountains, the ease of the beautiful environment gets to us again. We immediately feel the way of Slow Living again. Somewhere on top of a mountain, where we are in doubt which of the three dirty roads it should be, a butcher's son in full uniform steps out of a door. A sort of picture you only expect to see in movies.  Just two seconds later, the old father of the butcher also steps out the door to see what crazy cyclists there are in their yard..

 Soon we are beckoned and lured into the butcher shop to watch the entire wrestling process. Awesome! Son also takes us to the barn further on, to see the pigs. Little baby piglets, less than a week old, quickly hide behind mama pig. The son proudly shows us all the pigs and at the end of the barn he proudly presents us the biggest pig of all and proudly says: this will be the next one! Autch this gives us a painful feeling, because his big brother is probably on our menu this evening.. It makes us realize how important it is to see where your food is actually coming from. I mean those pigs have a beautiful life, but it is still a life that you're taking and which you should be thoughtful about, neither of us is planning on being a vegetarian, but we all agree that meat is something to enjoy on special moments and the be grateful for. Plus that every meat consumer should at least see where his meat is coming from.  Of course we had to buy some of their salami, but the lunch later in the village of Dogliani was completely vegetarian ;) 

Related Travel Guide:

Piedmont travel guide

Related Properties:

Ca'Delle Rondini

Shari Wijnhoud