White truffles from San Damiano d’Asti, and particularly those hunted by Franco Canta, were the protagonists of the Opening Gala Dinner of the Italian Cuisine World Summit held on November 2, 2010 at the Kowloon Shangri La Hotel in Hong Kong. The same truffles were also flavoured by the participants to the unprecedented Master Cooking Class “Everything you always wanted to know about truffles”, run by both 2-Michelin-stared Master Chef Marco Sacco and truffle hunter Franco Canta (click here to see him at work) at Va Bene Restaurant Hong Kong.
It’s during the traditional Fiera dei Santi – Fair of the Saints, in the second week of November, that San Damiano d’Asti, celebrates one of the most prestigious products of its territory, the white truffle. “It’s to tighten its bond with its land as an antidote against the globalization of tastes and consumption”, says Mr Mauro Caliendo, the Mayor of San Damiano. The Fair of the Saints and the concomitant Regional Fair of the Truffle have become more and more important in the course of the years. The Fair is very successful in terms of attendance, both on the part of the three hundred exhibitors as on that of the visitors and oenotourists; it is an event that owes its fame and fortune not only to its setting, namely in the old town of ancient roots, but also to its cultural wealth and ambiance to be shared with those who look for the culture of living well and nutritional wellbeing in the lands of the Piedmont.
Franco Canta and Luca Quaglia
(San Damiano's Councillor)
“The Town council has decided to make the white truffle the main star of this celebration and Fair of the Saints,” says Mr. Luca Quaglia, a Town councillor. It’s a due homage to this mysterious and since ancient times treasured tuber, whose value is found in its intense perfume, unmistakable and unique in shape – as regular and rounded as possible and, of course in its flavour.
San Damiano, a territory rich in woods, vineyards and orchards, is the green heart of the Comunità Collinare Colline Alfieri – the Hill community of the Alfieri Hills, hills of the area of Asti between Langhe and Monferrato, which share a single history, starting way back in time, in the times of the castles and of the feuds, border lands defended with pride, land of culture and of marquisate nobility, a reflection of natural harmony and farmers’ industriousness.