Foodie Tour Part 4: Medieval Hill Towns

Friday, October 25, 2013

Our last night in Rovinj was spent drinking wine straight from the bottle on a rocky outcrop where a martyr floated ashore in a sarcophagus circa 800 A.D. As the sky faded from aqua to inky black and the waves pulsed rhythmically below us, we watched fishermen sink flashlights to illuminate the sea and draw out their final day's catch of sardines and squid. It was beautiful to witness people doing what they've done for thousands of years on the water.

As difficult as it was to leave the sea, we headed into the Istrian interior the next day to explore Medieval towns renowned for their vineyards, olive groves and hills riddled with truffles.

The first stop: 2,000-year-old Motovun, the birthplace of race car driver Mario Andretti and home of an international film festival.

It prettily sits atop a hill
Two of its 531 residents
We saw the four corners of Istria from a walkway installed in the 1200s 
The view wasn't too bad. We spotted a woman truffle-hunting with her three truffle-sniffing dogs

Our favorite Motovun moment was spying a nondescript little cafe setup on a far edge of the village's walkway and settling down there for glasses of wine made from grapes grown 500 meters away. 

The second stop: Groznajn, the only Croatian settlement to still have an ethnic Italian majority and the seat of the International Cultural Centre of Young Musicians

A truly multi-functional building: Former city hall, jail and grainery on the left

Jayda bought us some truffle-black olive spread for a souvenir
Empty streets; it was reeeeeeally quiet there

The third stop: Modern Istrian regional center Buje, where the first traces of life date back to prehistoric times

We found a creepy, crumbly old cemetery
"December 1852"
I so wanted to steal an orange from the tree but decided against it
Fish soup! The kind restaurateur took J in the kitchen and fed her the soup scraps :)
BW had carbonara and raved about it for the next hour or so

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