Truffle is an edible mushroom that can be found along the roots of the trees, it can be white or black. This unusual delicacy, characterized by its intense smell, is also known as a powerful aphrodisiac. Namely, it was discovered that the truffle consists of a “pleasure molecule” or anandamide, responsible for the sense of happiness and well-being. Truffle can be found mostly in France and Italy, although they are growing all over the world. Truffles can only be harvested when they are ripe, in the popular “truffle hunting”, which is accompanied by hunting dogs who, because of their sharpened smell, are indispensable for the finding of these, as they call them “jewels of Istria”.
The natural habitat of truffles in Istria, precisely in the immediate vicinity of Livade, along the Mirna River, has enabled Zigante tradition a special culture of
preparation of freshly picked delicacies, which is also the pioneer site of the discovery of the world’s largest truffle. Namely Giancarlo Zigante in 1999. found a giant white truffle weighing 1.31 kg in the Motovun Forest, which entered the Guinness Book of Records. A few years later, the Zigante restaurant opens its doors and becomes an indispensable place for all lovers of this special delicacy. The Zigante restaurant is also included in the category of gastronomic quality restaurants, according to the criteria of one of the most prestigious institutions for high gastronomy, Jeunes Restaurateurs d’Europe from France. It should be noted that today’s standards of this prestigious institution meets only 13 restaurants in Croatia.
As one of the most prestigious restaurants, Zigante is the only one in Croatia specialized exclusively for truffle dishes, which are inexhaustible inspiration for Chef Damir Modrušan, who prepares fresh truffles all the year in extremely demanding creations. In addition to the already mentioned international recognitions, Zigante also won
the local award “Good Croatian Restaurants” in 2005, which undoubtedly confirms the exceptional quality of this unique place, which additionally offers a rich wine bar, and luxuriously equipped accommodation with four stars, for all those who decide to extend their stay in the magical interior of Istria.