Truffles are nowadays indispensable ingredients of any good restaurant kitchen in the world, mostly because of their amazing characteristics – irresistible aromas, distinctive flavor and numerous health benefits. All that, together with the fact that truffles can’t be grown artificially, is what makes truffles so valuable and expensive.
Truffles require specific conditions to be able to grow properly and develop those seductive scents and flavors, and there are not many areas in the world which can provide those conditions. They prefer forests because they grow in symbiosis with specific varieties of trees, but they also need favorable climate conditions, certain type of soil, and a specific level of humidity.
Motovun Forest, located in the heart of Istria, is one of those rare spots on Earth and also one of the largest natural habitats of truffles in the world. Over the spring and summer, the black truffles of Tuber Melanosporum variety can be found in this area, and during fall and winter truffle-hunters search for Tuber Magnatum Pico, the white Istrian truffle which is considered to be of top-quality by many chefs and culinary experts.
The quality of truffles can perhaps be determined by the intensiveness of aromas and the size of the truffle, but the best way is to taste it in a meal. Traditional Istrian gastronomy, with this magical underground mushroom as one of the main ingredients, has already proven numerous times that the Istrian truffles deserve to be placed on the very top when it comes to most valuable truffles found around the globe.