Bike & cuisine
Discover the regional highlights by bike
Published on 3. February 2020
Cyclists have it good. They are doing something that only has advantages. They are active, they are out and about in nature. They are so fast that they can cover longer distances without any problems, and so relaxed that they can experience the landscape and appreciate the variety of sounds and smells. In addition, they largely travel emission-free and end up in typical local inns and restaurants with plenty of appetite. People who are very active not only earn the right to enjoy some good food but also look forward to it. At any rate more than people who spend the whole day sitting in the car or on a bus. Being in a typical inn, enjoying regional specialities, exchanging a few words with the innkeepers, getting tips for the route ahead is also a piece of culture and makes the bike trip an all-round interesting experience. And this is what connects all cycling enthusiasts, no matter how fast or leisurely they are out and about.
There have always been leisure cyclists. With the arrival of e-bikes, this has now taken on a whole new quality. You enjoy the comfort, pedal uphill on steep ascents and after a hearty snack you are happy to continue on your way thanks to the electric motor. Good culinary locations are a must. On the way, cyclists like to look left and right across the cycle track to see whether there is a snack station, trattoria or an ice cream parlour that might tempt. The guilty conscience about high calories is then no longer an issue. After all, you are being active, thus you can and should eat well.
Many regions have adapted very well to the culinary desires of cyclists. For example, on the Drava Cycle Route, which is a long tour across Austria and leads to Hungary. On the way through East Tyrol and Carinthia there are a about 50 Drava inns along the route. It is often difficult to get back on your bike when you are spoiled like at the Buschenschank Egger wine tavern near Spittal. Homemade specialities from the “Saftstelze” (knuckle of pork) to Osso Collo, Bündnerfleisch, salami, cheese, a typical Carinthian Reindling cake and farmhouse bread from the wood-fired oven, in addition to cider and apple juice from the tavern’s own production, are temptations awaiting in the farmhouse directly at the cycle track. The tavern is a popular meeting place for cyclists and you can quickly make contact with like-minded people here. A few kilometres further south, you can cycle comfortably along the Alpe-Adria Trail through Friuli, past wonderful restaurants – initially with distinctly Alpine, Carinthian and Slovenian-inspired cuisine, later classically Italian – and then just past the legendary ham metropolis of San Daniele.
South Tyrol is also a paradise for leisure cyclists, as it is famous for its refined combination of Alpine vitality food cuisine and Cucina Italiana. A tour southward through the Isarco Valley to Bolzano would be a good start with culinary breaks in Vipiteno (Sterzing), in the beautiful Old Town of Bressanone (Brixen) with its picturesque arcades, in romantic Chiusa (Klausen) and in the elegant centre of Bolzano. To mention the many good restaurants along the route, serving Schlutzkrapfen (mezzelune), barley soups, bacon and Italian classics, would fill a whole book. You can manage the tour in a day, you can also take a week, but you will never get bored here. A tour across South Tyrol from Lake Reschensee in the west to Alta Pusteria in the east is also very attractive. A wonderful trip for two to three days through apple orchards and vineyards, past wineries and historic mountain villages in the Vinschgau region, with a promenade along the banks of the Adige in Merano, with espresso or gelato, a stroll through Bolzano and historic places in the Adige and Puster Valley – from classic alpine to playful Mediterranean and back again, there is also a suitable accompanying culinary programme. A real gourmet tour. Simply Velontour.