Istria cuisine - Istrian dishes

Istrian Delicacies

Istrian cuisine is known for its diversity. In the spring, our chefs will surprise you with wild asparagus, the summer is all about fish and shellfish, and in the autumn, you can always count on truffles. In the winter, minestrone, cabbage and roasted sausages are prepared in warm, lively taverns. A wide range of traditional dishes is here to choose from. And don’t forget about the old traditional Istrian recipes: homemade bread and soup are all a part of the Istrian life of old times. Croatian cuisine is heterogeneous and every part of the country has its own culinary tradition. Istrian cuisine has found a special place among these different traditions with plenty of recognizable delicacies.

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Traditions of the Northwest

To say that home-cooked squid from the Adriatic Sea is a savory treat, would be a serious understatement! Over the past century, squid has become a mouth-watering specialty that no traveler should leave the northwest of Istria without tasting. This delicious and delicate ingredient is simple to prepare and is suitable for most occasions, from traditional rustic dishes to classy cuisine. Below, we’re giving you everything you need to know so that you can put this traditional Istrian meal on the menu tonight!

Warm Up Your Winter With Švoj

In the sandy, muddy seabeds of the Mediterranean Sea, a flatfish by the name of Dover sole, or better known as “švoj” in Istria, can be found. It is typically caught in late fall and is reserved for chilly winter days. Serving as an Istrian comfort food, the švoj has become a symbol of the region and has inspired chefs throughout the peninsula to take the Istrian culinary tradition to another level. This fish is easy to clean and provides delicious white meat that can be lightly fried in olive oil for a quick dinner, or can be combined ...

The delicious shellfish of northwestern Istria

Whether farmed or wild, shellfish from northwestern Istria are exceptionally flavourful thanks to the clean sea environment. They are popular year-round, but their meat is particularly delicious in February and March, when you can taste them in numerous wonderful creations by local restaurants and konobas at the ...
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Shellfish, Buzara-Style

Off the western coast of the Istrian peninsula, near the estuary of the freshwater Mirna River, the region’s most delicious shellfish are harvested. This shellfish tradition has been traced back to antiquity, with scallops being the most frequently gathered. While shellfish are a seasonal delicacy, typically enjoyed ...
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OPG Radosevic - Master Cheese Maker

The history of Istrian cheese making began twenty years ago, when Branko Radosevic registered the first cheese plant on the Istrian peninsula, OPG Radosevic. After renovating a small hilltop home surrounded by lush green pastures in the village of Grobice near Brtonigla, Branko, with the help of his wife Ivona, began ...
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Honey from northwestern Istria

Honey is often called nature’s gold and history’s forgotten treasure, and it has been an essential part of every home pharmacy since ancient times. As the perfect, natural creation of hardworking honey bees (Apis mellifera), it has everything the human body needs – fructose, glucose, sucrose, minerals, proteins, amino ...
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Boskarin - true delicacy from Istrian traditional cattle

Boskarin is the white grey long horned cattle in Istria, a symbol the region. It was used in agriculture, to plow the fields, for towing the stones for building the houses while its meat and milk were used by farmers as food. But when modernization took pace, the first tractors that were introduced to speed up the ...
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Wild asparagus - A spring delicacy combined with outdoor recreation

The wild asparagus is so deeply embedded in the habits of Istria’s people that many take it for granted, when, in fact, it is an exceptional culinary delicacy. In Istria, both the young and the old know all there is to know about the asparagus, and you will be hard put to find a family that does not hurry to the ...
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Istrian restaurants in the celebrated guide I Ristoranti d'Italia

Some dozen Istrian restaurants have been included in the celebrated gourmet guide “Le guide de l’Espresso – I Ristoranti d’Italia”. The guide is just one of the publications published under the l’Espresso name by the international publishing house RCS Media Group. One of the largest publishing houses in Italy, RCS ...
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Kapešante of Novigrad

True gourmets consider the pilgrim scallop of Novigrad, or kapešante as it is called locally, to be one of the tastiest shellfish in the world, because it grows in the Novigrad marine area where salty seawater mixes with fresh river water. A gourmet festival entitled “Kapešante of Novigrad” is held each year in honour ...
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Istrian pršut

The production of Istrian pršut (dried ham), a traditional specialty, is based on authenticity and on customs passed on from one generation to the next. Great care is given to pig rearing, and to the way pigs’ legs are cut, salted, peppered and dried. Istrian pršut is an indigenous product as only in Istria is the ...
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