Cherry Festival in Lari 2017
Sweet tasting in a beautiful medieval village near Pisa
From 27 May 2017 to 04 June 2017
In Lari, a beautiful medieval village in the province of Pisa, on 27.05, 28.05 and from 2.06 to 4.06.17 the 61st edition of the Lari Cherry Festival will take place, now more popular than ever. One of the most succulent events in Tuscany will not leave you short of cherries to nibble! Besides, you can visit the charming village and combine cherries with some local delicacies. Nothing better for a pleasant spring day.
The former comune di Lari, now under Casciana Terme, is located along the road connecting Pisa to Volterra, in a particularly rich area from a food and wine point of view: the hills of Pisa. Here outstanding olive oil and excellent wine are produced, but there is also a secular vocation for cultivating fruit trees, cherry trees being one of the most important productions. The ciliegia di Lari, in particular, is cultivated in Lari (Pisa) and in other places such as Cevoli, Usigliano, Perignano and San Ruffino. For this reason, Lari is part of the Associazione Nazionale Città delle Ciliegie. The 36 cultivators in the area produce as many as 500 tons, consisting of 50% of the whole Tuscan production. This type of cultivation has its roots far back in time, so much so that there are very old native varieties which over the years have been flanked by most recent ones. Eventually these succulent cherry varieties amounted to 19, ranging from the oldest - the Marchiana - but also Gambolungo, Morella and Siso to more recent ones such as the ones obtained from the New Star Cherry.
At the Cherry Festival in Lari a prize, ‘Ciliegia d'Oro' is also awarded as a recognition of the fruit that has the best organoleptic characteristics and taste. Needless to say, the struggle between manufacturers is particularly fierce, even though they all taste great to us ‘common mortals’! The cherry of Lari (Tuscany) has some features that unite all varieties: it has a good consistency, it tastes sweet and has a typical dark red colour. That said, not all types of cherries are used in the same way. The Morella, the Papalina and Gambolungo, for example, have a thin skin and a high sugar content and are particularly suitable for producing canned food. Other varieties are, however, perfect for fresh consumption.
But let’s come to the Cherry Festival itself and anticipate how it takes place, and we are sure we will leave you licking your lips by the end of it. For this traditional 'Cherry Festival' Lari, the village fills with typical market stalls overflowing with cherries. They can be purchased in baskets, boxes or in a classic paper cone. The delicious fruit also makes delicious Lari cherry jam, among which we recommend tasting the Confettura Extra di ciliegie di Lari, made by nothing less than the Comitato per la Tutela e la Valorizzazione della Ciliegia di Lari. This will surely find it on excellent tarts and other sweet foods that will further delight your palate. As delicious as the cherries can taste, they are not enough for a whole dinner or lunch. So on the occasion of one of the most important Pisa festivals, the usual food stand where you can taste local dishes could not be missing. Said between us, Tuscany festivals and feasts are usually where the best cooks of the area prepare meals, and their dishes are the best example of traditional cuisine. And if you fancy something less 'free-range' and a little easier to reach, in the village there are several restaurants where you can still enjoy the typical cuisine of the area.
Lari municipality, which among other things received the Bandiera Arancione del Touring Club Italiano, would be worth a visit on its own, even when the Tuscany festival is not on. Even better if you combine the two and make the most of this unmissable opportunity, especially since during the event you can visit Lari Castle, the real heart of this delightful old town which still preserves all its medieval charm. But the Cherry Festival in Lari offers even more by organizing a series of side events such as shows, live music, entertainment and a touch of folk.
So if for example you are planning a trip for June 2nd, a bank holiday in Italy, Lari in Italy is definitely a destination to include in your itinerary through the Pisan Hills. Proceed to seeing the 'leaning tower' and Piazza dei Miracoli, and book one of our fantastic hotels in Pisa to make your stay even more comfortable. In the end only thirty kilometres separate Pisa from Lari – half an hours’ car journey. A nice spring trip in Tuscany is a must – you’ve even got something as delicious as cherries to taste while you visit our beautiful region… As the saying goes, it is quite literally like the cherry on top of the cake!
Period: From 27 May 2017 to 04 June 2017
Event location: Lari
Contacts: info & program at www.comune.lari.pi.it
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