A journey across the gastronomic excellences of the Lecco area of Brianza
A unique territory for its landscape peculiarities and its historical value, a few kilometres from Milan and yet so profoundly different in its identity.
Brianza Lecchese, so called because it lies on the borders of Lecco, can be easily reached not only from the Lombard capital but also from Bergamo, Monza, Como and of course Lecco. For this reason, it often welcomes local tourism, especially in summer when it becomes a cool refuge for those fleeing the hot temperatures of the city.
A green territory, which without hills offers dense forests, soft hills and numerous small lakes, far less known than Lario but not because it is lacking in attractions. Around these lakes of glacial origin, surrounded by rich vegetation, are many possibilities that are open to tourists interested in outdoor life, thanks to the paths to be covered on foot or by bicycle, to the activities reserved for those who love to ride a horse and those who want to experience the lakes “from the inside”, choosing to navigate them by boat or by canoe, among the reeds and picture-postcard landscapes.
Spring and summer (when it is not too hot even in these parts) are undoubtedly the best seasons to enjoy all these possibilities in touch with nature, but Brianza Lecchese also has a lot to offer in terms of history and culture, with splendid villas to visit even in the colder months.
To enjoy a breath-taking view, visit the Beata Vergine del Carmelo Sanctuary, inside the park of Montevecchia in the Curone Valley, which also offers eleven itineraries that can be travelled on foot, on horseback and by mountain bike.
The identity of this area is strongly linked to agriculture and breeding, together with the dairy tradition and the processing of cured meats. Just think of the Salame di Brianza DOP, a leading product of the area that best tells the long history of pig farming in the area, whose origins date back to the Gallic populations. And if for the most refined processing techniques you have to wait for the monks in the Middle Ages, it is precisely the confirmation of the territory and the climatic characteristics that make the difference. Mitigated by the presence of the lake and protected to the north by the Pre-Alps, it is the ideal climate for the conservation of pork. But the Salame di Brianza DOP is not the only excellence among the cured meats of the area. The raw ham Marco d’Oggiono, with its unmistakeable sweetness, owes its excellence not only to the processing techniques but also to the special intersection between the air of the lake and that of the hills, essential during the aging process.
Cheeses include robiola, goat’s cheese, and stracchino, including stracchino goat’s cheese from the Curone Valley, a raw milk cheese with a washed rind, and Montevecchia goat’s cheese, a fresh raw milk and paste cheese only produced with goat’s milk in the Regional Park of Montevecchia and the Curone Valley.