A unique reality in Europe, La Fiorida is a perfectly successful example of the so-called “Rural-chic”: from hospitality, to Agriturismo; from the SPA, to the Michelin star restaurant inside.
by Stefania Buscaglia
In Mantello, in Valtellina, there is a unique place, where a dream took shape, giving life to La Fiorida, a farmhouse that welcomes its visitors with a complete offer in rural-chic style: from the restaurant to the hospitality; from wellness to the farm.
A project started at the beginning of the new millennium thanks to the passion and initiative of Plinio Vanini, a visionary entrepreneur who, having bought sixty-five hectares of land, first decided to build a stable in which to breed his cows with passion, and then develop a project around it devoted to production and hospitality capable of satisfying the demands of demanding guests, but at the same time eager to find a link with nature and its values.
Thus was born La Fiorida, a chic farmhouse located in one of the most suggestive locations in Lombardy, in a valley where the Parco delle Orobie Valtellinesi meets the Retiche Alpi, easy to reach, and a short walk from Milan and Lake Como: here it’s possible to lodge in twenty-nine large bedrooms (from twenty-four to sixty-nine square meters each), furnished in wood in elegant Valtellina style, and green-friendly. The courtesy products for the bathroom are made with the milk of the La Fiorida cows and to each is given the name of a natural element, be it a grass, a flower or a bird.
Hospitality in its deepest meaning that finds in the wellness area the perfect place to rediscover harmony and serenity: four hundred square meters of beauty farm in which to relax thanks to two swimming pools (one of which, hydromassage), a sauna, a vitarium, the bathroom turkish, aromatic and emotional showers, the relaxation and fitness area, a wonderful outdoor solarium and numerous treatments of which, unmissable, the milk one.
In addition to the farm there is the Agricultural Company, the pride of this unique reality in Europe: the two hundred cows in the stable are bred with great care, they have a dedicated SPA (yes: even the cows have a very personal Beauty farm) and thanks to this attention, the Company has been certified as “Animal Welfare”. The same attention is paid to the pig and sheep farms, and to the care that is put into the production of typical cheeses, made within the La Fiorida dairy, as well as all other types of production (honey, preserves, cured meats, etc.).
Obviously the products, in addition to being sold inside the farm itself (and also online), are used in the kitchens of the Quattro Stagioni Restaurant and of La Présef, the first and only example in Europe, of a Michelin Star restaurant inside a Farmhouse.
A unique case is that of La Présef (that in local dialect means “the manger”), a restaurant built in 2012 and awarded only a year later with the Michelin Star, where the Chef Gianni Tarabini – class ‘67 – popose dishes never predictable.
An authentic project, carried on with passion and stubbornness, with all the risks of a gourmet cuisine for the only products proposed in the farm or offered by the small producers and artisans of the surrounding area.
A friendly territory that the Chef Tarabini chooses to preserve and promote through an idea of cuisine that confirms how “local eating” can easily be accompanied by a haute cuisine model. Thus, a poor root like Topinambur is ennobled to the point of presenting itself in different consistencies or temperatures, and the Risotto oscillates between the acidic notes of a fermented cauliflower and the sweetness of the animella. The taste of the Quaglia, is enhanced by the perfect balance of lard, dried apricots and foie gras, and the sweet note in which traditional desserts such as Bisciola are reinterpreted in a gourmet key, and to which is added the recent collaboration with Simone Bonini di Carapina, Master of gourmet ice cream and now an important pawn in the kitchens of La Fiorida. A classy proposal that comes from the simplicity of a place flanked by a cellar that rewards the Valtellina terroir, its history and its scents.