Located between the provinces of Bari, Taranto and Brindisi, Itria Valley is nicknamed “the Valley of Trulli”, the white conical-roofed houses. Itria Valley is a trove of specialities, protected and promoted by the Local Action Groups (GAL). Some of the most prized white grape types are grown in the area, including Verdeca and Bianco d’Alessano, from which two white wines are obtained: Locorotondo CDO and Martina CDO. Itria Valley has a smaller olive production, compared to the surrounding areas. Nonetheless, it can rightfully boast the Terra di Bari PDO extra-virgin olive oil.
Breeding in Itria Valley
In the space between Martina Franca, Noci and Putignano the Bruna and Frisona cattle breeds are reared, for the production of both fresh and mature cheeses. Their meat can be tasted at the so-called fornelli, butcher’s shops with a kitchen and an eating corner, serving, in addition to beef, meatballs and gnummeredde, rolls made with lamb entrails. The most representative product is undoubtedly the capocollo of Martina Franca, as well as the typical salami, pancetta and soppressata, which are listed among the Typical Italian Products.
The Botanical Conservatory I Giardini di Pomona
One of the gems of Itria Valley is the the Botanical Conservatory I Giardini di Pomona (Pomona Gardens), which houses over 800 types of fruit-bearing trees. The fig species Ficus carica, with over 250 accessions, represents the main collection of this true biodiversity bank for fruit plants. Another relevant collection is that of the pomegranate. Then there are collections of apple trees, pear trees, almond trees, citrus fruits and other species that without risk of recovery would risk extinction.