Is there something missing on your life-time to do list? You are searching for something to fill in the gap… something to fill in the little space of an experience truly unique… an experience even an adventure of some sort to fulfill a small void, so that perhaps your soul could be at ease.
No matter the season you visit Alta Badia, Italy, there will be plenty to do. If you are an outdoor enthusiast with even the slightest of interest in fine dining, then you have found your home. The resort town, mainly known for freeride skiing, where you can hire alpine guides to tour you through the Dolomites, with vast views of Sella Massif, and go where only your skis are making tracks in the virgin snow. If you prefer the warmer seasonal sports, you could find yourself clinging to the rock walls of “via ferrata” for some ultimate rock climbing, or you can do like many Italians and peddle up the along the roads of great bicycle legends, or take on the trails.
But I’m really hear to tell you about the food. With a population of 1,340 people, you might not expect to find much outside of traditional Italian mountain fare. With the ski mountain boasting of many world-class black diamond ski trails, they have got to keep up the impressions to feed the hungry sportsmen.
If you happen to be staying at the Rosa Alpina Chateaux Hotel, then this two Michelin-Star is just a few steps away from your room. The location started out as a pizzeria, where Chef Norbert Niederkofler reserved his gourmet dishes for only a small part of the menu. The gourmet side caught on, and the popularity quickly increased and in 2000, he was awarded his first star. Along with the prestigious award, came motivation and he quickly gained popularity. He renovated the entire restaurant, which now holds nine tables, with one overlooking the kitchen for the guest to view his works and workings of masterpiece. Now he holds two Michelin Stars, along with three toques and is rated among the top 16 restaurants in all of Italy.
Warm your bones after a day of skiing the in the dining room warmed by an open fireplace and start off with a terrine of Jerusalem artichokes, pomegranate, cheese and carpaccio sourced from local mountain beef, finished off with black truffles. You might think you are in the heaven eating the gods’ pasta with the home-made Cavatelli pasta ragout. Move on for the lamb with an artichoke puree, or the ossobucco with Grezza polenta. If you want the chef to simply have his way with you, (why not?), you can choose the 5 to 7 course menu with beautiful wine pairings and really experience what mountain cuisine means for Chef Niederkofler.
Stüa di Michel Restaurant
A diner’s and winer’s destination restaurant alike, this beautiful, rustic establishment was built in the fifteenth century. Located in Corvara, the Stüa di Michel has become the centerpiece in the Hotel La Perla. Chef Arturo Spicocchi, from the Italian Marches, was awarded a Michelin star as it’s first chef. His creations originate from deep traditional roots with a bit of a modern touch. He only uses ingredients that are biodynamically grown. A saddle of venison with a ginger crust. For dessert, what is called the “Verlorene Ritter”, meaning “lost knight”, flavored with caraway.
Stüa di Michel’s wine cellar is stocked with 30,000 bottles, boasting the largest wine cellar in Italy, where you can order wine what was thought as lost or unobtainable such as Sassicaia and Château d’Yquem, Romanée Conti Champagne.
Alongside St. Hubertus, La Siriola is among the top 16 restaurants in Italy. “The Nightingale”, English for Siriola, is located in the Hotel Ciasa Salares , where everything from the hotel to their prized, one-Michelin-star restaurant dedicates itself to a natural philosophy. The Head chef, Fabio Cucchelli, translates ‘natural’ into the use of game meat for his menu, though he loves to dabble in his second passion of patisserie as well.
Experience the game of the Dolomites with a loin of venison, dressed with chestnut cream. For waterfowl, a risotto with porcini and duck. A partridge with white bacon. Choose from desserts to have a go at Chef Fabio’s patisserie. Agadir dates and roasted mandarin sauce with chocolate, a brittle praline puff pastry and nougat cream, or Campari sorbet with a delightful cherry sauce.
Chat with their Sommelier and owner, Stefan Wieser, who has made the biodynamic wine cellar collection, his key responsibility. You can join him and the chef once a week, where guests can view Fabio at work and Stefan grants a secret pass to share his secrets about his wines.