Four days with Paolo Bettini, surrounded by the fascinating atmosphere of the UNESCO World Heritage hills.
A crackling fireplace in the crisp evening air welcomes us with the quiet energy of old-fashioned traditions. Ai Cadelach is a kind of romantic chalet near Lake Revine: outside the silence of the surrounding woods and inside the warm welcome of an aperitif surrounded by wooden furniture and soft lighting.
Here Paolo Bettini awaits us with his usual enthusiasm, eager to let us discover all the secrets of these hills that, although different from those among which he was born, hold a special fascination for him.
From Valdobbiadene with love
The sky promises rain but we are not deterred, on the contrary! We are ready to set off towards the Sentiero del Vino, a must for these places that leave you breathless for the historicity of the vineyards perched on the slopes like so many soldiers. We spend our mid-morning break in a little corner of a fairy tale: the Molinetto della Croda, set between a rock and a little waterfall that really seem to have come out of another era. Just time for a few photos and we set off again – complete with a dirt track – towards the Sanctuary of Collagù, small and cosy but with an enchanting view. Before lunch, a good glass of Prosecco cannot be missed, tasted right in front of one of the most iconic squares in the area, that of Valdobbiadene.
The donkey whisperer
The road up to San Maman is one of those mountain paths that at night seems to lead to a witch’s lair. Cars form small torches on the dark hillside while the lights of the villages in the valley seem further away than ever as Marzio Bruseghin welcomes us into his kingdom. The fireplace, his Prosecco and all the products of the earth with an authentic and genuine flavour: this is the recipe of a champion who, from his hermitage, seems to be the happiest man on earth. Next to him? All his beloved donkeys, each with a different name and character, testifying that, sometimes, remote places make us find ourselves.
Ca del Poggio
When we set off, the sun peeps through the clouds and the horizon is finally clear: this is how we can see how hard the legendary Ca’ del Poggio wall is, now famous for the passage of the great professional cyclists’ races. Olive trees and vineyards form the backdrop to curve after curve that climb mute and cruel towards the longed-for summit. Every experience in cycling has its own flavour, this one more bitter than others, but – in the end – the conquest is all we remember.
If there is one thing cycling has taught us, it is to team up, to share thoughts and emotions as if we have known each other forever. So it happens that a coffee stop becomes almost a family lunch, with five-layer sandwiches, wine and espresso extracted from a futuristic machine. A moment of conviviality that shows how cycling is not just a sport but a real way of life.
Thank you Roberto!
Bubbles of excellence
To end the adventure in the Prosecco hills in style, we return to the beating heart of the DOCG, namely Valdobbiadene, where there is a vineyard right in the centre of town, one of many owned by the Bortolomiol family, visionary winegrowers who have been carrying on the history of Prosecco Superiore for three generations. After a short but intense visit to the winery, where we are explained everything – but really everything – about the production method of this Italian excellence, we move on to the practical side. During the tasting, we are expertly guided in the tasting of three wines where taste, aromas and bubbles tell the story of a hundred-year-long passion. So how can one fail to raise a glass – accompanied by a good dish of bigoli in sauce – to four intense days of discovery and fun, in classic BikeandTaste style.Back to the list