On my way down to the toe of Italy, I stopped at the delightful town of Pizzo. The houses tumble down the hillside to the small port guarded by a 15th century castle. Pizzo is famous for tarufo and, as I love to try all the local delicacies, I find the nearest gelateria an order a portion. It’s only 5pm so I resign myself to having dessert before dinner.
What arrives looks like a huge chocolate truffle and it tastes like one too. Layers of vanilla, hazelnut and chocolate ice-cream surround a centre of maraschino cherries swimming in chocolate sauce. The whole thing is dusted with cocoa powder and looks like a giant truffle which I guess is how it gets its name. It’s served in a scallop-shaped, white dish which by the time I’ve finished is streaked with melted chocolate ice-cream and sauce. Whilst I’m tempted to clean the dish with my finger, I resist the temptation and leave that job to the dishwasher.
Up in the main square there are a dozen or so gelaterias offering a multitude of tartufi – lemoncello, pistachio, caramel. Even Lidl are promoting a Christmas special of assorted mini tartufi made by one of the artisanal producers in Pizzo.