Ostuni Food and Wine: A Gastronomic Adventure

Ostuni is a gastronomic paradise that offers a wide array of delicious dishes and authentic ingredients.

Ostuni Food and Wine: A Gastronomic Adventure

Ostuni, the white city in Puglia, is known for its beautiful architecture and delicious food. But what about the wine? Puglia is one of Italy’s top wine-producing regions, and Ostuni is right in the heart of it. In this article, I’ll introduce you to some of the best wines of Puglia and recommend the perfect foods to pair with them.

Ostuni’s Wine Scene

Puglia is a major wine-producing region of Italy, and Ostuni is right in the heart of it. The wine scene in Ostuni is varied and interesting, with something to please everyone. There are dozens of wineries in the area, many of which offer tastings and tours.

Exploring the Local Food Scene

Ostuni is a gastronomic paradise that offers a wide array of delicious dishes and authentic ingredients. When it comes to exploring the local food scene, there are a few must-try dishes that will take you on a culinary adventure.

Ostuni’s local food scene is a true delight for food enthusiasts. From indulging in the iconic orecchiette pasta to savoring the fluffy focaccia barese, the flavors of this region will leave your taste buds dancing with joy. Don’t forget to explore the authentic ingredients like the exquisite olive oil and creamy burrata, which truly showcase the exceptional culinary heritage of Ostuni.

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When it comes to exploring the local food scene in Ostuni, you’ll find a wide array of popular dishes that are sure to tantalize your taste buds. One standout dish is the famous “orecchiette con le cime di rapa” which translates to “little ears with turnip tops.” This traditional pasta dish features homemade pasta shells that are perfectly paired with a sautéed mixture of turnip greens, garlic, and chili flakes. Another must-try is “bombette pugliesi,” a savory delight made from thinly sliced pork wrapped around a filling of cheese, herbs, and spices, then grilled to perfection.

In addition to these mouthwatering dishes, Ostuni boasts an abundance of authentic ingredients that elevate the local cuisine. The region’s olive oil is renowned for its exceptional quality and flavor. Made from locally harvested olives, it adds a distinctive touch to salads, pasta, and grilled vegetables. Likewise, the fresh seafood from the nearby Adriatic Sea is a highlight, with dishes like “fritto misto di pesce” (mixed fried seafood) and “zuppa di cozze” (mussels soup) being local favorites.

Local chefs take pride in showcasing the region’s rich culinary heritage, often drawing inspiration from traditional recipes passed down through generations. As Chef Giuseppe, owner of a renowned Ostuni restaurant, states, “Our goal is to preserve the authenticity of the dishes while adding our own unique twist. We source the freshest ingredients from local farmers and fishermen to create unforgettable dining experiences.”

Authentic Ingredients

Ostuni, known as the “White City” in Puglia, Italy, offers an exquisite culinary experience filled with authentic flavors and locally sourced ingredients. When it comes to exploring the local food scene, you’ll discover a rich variety of dishes that showcase the region’s traditional flavors and cooking techniques.

  1. Olive Oil: Ostuni is famous for its high-quality extra virgin olive oil. The olives are carefully harvested by hand and pressed using traditional methods, resulting in a distinctive flavor profile that is both fruity and peppery. This golden elixir serves as the foundation for many local dishes and adds a unique touch to every culinary creation.
  2. Fresh Seafood: Located along the Adriatic coast, Ostuni boasts an abundance of fresh seafood. From succulent red prawns and tender octopus to briny anchovies and plump mussels, seafood lovers will be delighted by the array of options available. Local fishermen bring in their catch daily, ensuring that only the freshest ingredients make it to your plate.
  3. Apulian Cheeses: The region is also renowned for its artisanal cheeses. Burrata, a creamy mozzarella-like cheese with a creamy center, is a true delicacy that hails from this area. Other local cheeses, such as caciocavallo and ricotta forte, offer a unique taste experience and pair perfectly with cured meats or freshly baked bread.
  4. Rustic Vegetables: Ostuni’s fertile land yields an array of fresh vegetables that form the backbone of many traditional dishes. You’ll find ripe tomatoes bursting with flavor, vibrant bell peppers, and earthy artichokes. These ingredients are often combined to create hearty stews, colorful salads, or simply enjoyed roasted to perfection.

If you’re looking for a memorable dining experience, make sure to try our local burrata cheese with a glass of our award-winning Fiano. The creamy texture of the cheese perfectly balances the citrus notes in the wine, creating a match made in heaven!

Local chef, Antonio De Luca.

Ostuni Wine Tour

When it comes to exploring and experiencing the best of Ostuni’s food and wine scene, a wine tour is an absolute must. With its rich history and fertile lands, Ostuni is home to a diverse range of wineries that produce exceptional wines. Embark on a wine tour to discover the fascinating world of local winemaking and indulge in the flavors that characterize the region.

  1. Visiting Local Wineries: During your Ostuni wine tour, make sure to visit some of the local wineries that dot the scenic countryside. These wineries offer a unique opportunity to witness the winemaking process firsthand and learn about the traditional techniques employed by passionate vintners. Take a guided tour of the vineyards, explore the cellars, and gain insights into the art of winemaking.
  2. Learning About the Different Varietals: Ostuni boasts a rich variety of grape varietals, each contributing its distinct flavors and characteristics to the local wines. From the robust and full-bodied Primitivo to the crisp and refreshing Verdeca, there is something to suit every palate. As you explore the wineries, knowledgeable experts will introduce you to the different varietals, explaining their unique qualities and the ideal food pairings that complement them.
  3. Best Pairings: After a day of wine tasting, it’s time to satiate your appetite with a perfect meal that complements the flavors of the wines you’ve sampled. Local restaurants in Ostuni pride themselves on serving traditional dishes made with fresh, locally sourced ingredients. From delectable seafood dishes to hearty meat-based specialties, there’s an abundance of options to choose from. Seek recommendations from the winemakers you meet during your tour, as they often have valuable insights into the ideal food and wine pairings.

Visiting the local wineries allows you to immerse yourself in the world of winemaking and gain a deeper appreciation for the craftsmanship behind each bottle.

Winemaker, Maria Russo.

Visiting Local Wineries

When exploring the gastronomic wonders of Ostuni, a visit to the local wineries is an absolute must. Immerse yourself in the rich tradition of winemaking and discover the diverse flavors of the region. Here’s what you can expect when visiting local wineries:

  1. Guided Tours: Take advantage of the guided tours offered by the wineries. Knowledgeable staff will walk you through the wine production process, from grape to bottle. Gain insights into the history and techniques that make Ostuni wines so unique.
  2. Tasting Experiences: Indulge in a sensory journey by participating in wine tasting sessions. Sample a variety of exquisite wines, including Primitivo, Negroamaro, and Verdeca. Allow your taste buds to savor the complex layers of flavors and aromas that characterize each wine.
  3. Vineyard Walks: Take a leisurely stroll through the picturesque vineyards surrounding the wineries. Breathe in the fresh air and admire the lush vine rows, bathed in golden sunlight. It’s the perfect opportunity to appreciate the natural beauty that contributes to the creation of exceptional wines.
  4. Expert Guidance: Engage in conversations with passionate winemakers and vineyard managers who are dedicated to their craft. They will gladly share their knowledge and answer any questions you might have. Learn about the terroir, grape varieties, and production techniques that shape the character of Ostuni wines.
  5. Exclusive Bottles: Don’t miss the chance to purchase exclusive bottles directly from the wineries. These unique offerings are not available in regular stores and provide a memorable memento of your gastronomic adventure in Ostuni.
  6. Wine and Food Pairings: Some wineries offer food pairing experiences, where local culinary delights are expertly paired with the wines produced on-site. Immerse yourself in the perfect harmony of flavors as each bite complements the characteristics of the wine.

Learning About the Different Varietals

When it comes to exploring the world of Ostuni wines, learning about the different varietals is an essential part of the experience. Here are some key varietals to look out for:

  1. Primitivo: Known as the “king” of Puglian red wines, Primitivo is a rich and robust varietal with deep flavors of blackberries, cherries, and spices. It pairs wonderfully with grilled meats and hearty pasta dishes.
  2. Negroamaro: Another popular red varietal from the region, Negroamaro offers a velvety texture and notes of dark berries, chocolate, and tobacco. Its versatility makes it a great choice for pairing with a variety of dishes, from roasted lamb to aged cheeses.
  3. Verdeca: If you prefer white wines, Verdeca is a must-try varietal. It is crisp and refreshing with zesty citrus flavors and hints of green apple and herbs. Enjoy it alongside fresh seafood, light salads, or as an aperitif.
  4. Fiano: Fiano is an ancient white grape variety that produces wines with a beautiful golden hue and complex aromas of tropical fruits, honey, and almonds. This well-structured wine pairs excellently with creamy pasta dishes and seafood risotto.
  5. Malvasia: This aromatic white varietal is known for its floral and tropical fruit notes, as well as a hint of honey. It is a fantastic choice for pairing with spicy dishes, Asian cuisine, or enjoying on its own as a refreshing summer wine.

Where to Enjoy the Perfect Meal

When it comes to finding the perfect meal in Ostuni, you’ll be spoiled for choice with its delightful selection of local restaurants. Whether you’re craving traditional Pugliese cuisine or international flavors with a local twist, there’s something for everyone.

Local Restaurants

Ostuni is a gastronomic paradise with a wide array of local restaurants that cater to every palate. Whether you are in the mood for traditional Italian cuisine or experimental fusion dishes, these local establishments are sure to leave you craving for more.

  1. Ristorante Masseria Il Frantoio: Located in an enchanting ancient olive oil mill, Masseria Il Frantoio offers a unique dining experience combining traditional Puglian flavors with modern twists. Their menu features dishes made with locally sourced ingredients, such as fresh seafood from the nearby Adriatic Sea and seasonal vegetables from the surrounding countryside.
  2. Osteria del Tempo Perso: This cozy trattoria is known for its warm and welcoming atmosphere. The menu showcases the region’s culinary heritage with dishes like orecchiette pasta tossed in a rich tomato sauce and topped with local cheese. Don’t forget to indulge in their homemade desserts, like the decadent almond cake, which perfectly pairs with a glass of sweet wine.
  3. La Taverna della Gelosia: For a taste of traditional cuisine in a rustic setting, La Taverna della Gelosia is a must-visit. The menu highlights the simplicity and authenticity of Apulian dishes, with a focus on locally caught fish, wild greens, and the famous burrata cheese. Be sure to try their signature dish, the “orecchiette con le cime di rapa,” a classic pasta dish tossed with bitter greens.
  4. Antichi Sapori: Nestled in the heart of Ostuni’s historic center, Antichi Sapori is renowned for its dedication to using only the freshest ingredients. Their menu showcases the best of Puglian cuisine, including dishes like “bruschetta” topped with sun-ripened tomatoes and extra virgin olive oil, and succulent grilled meats served with a side of local greens.

Best Pairings

When it comes to experiencing the true essence of Ostuni’s food and wine, knowing the best pairings is essential. The region is renowned for its rich culinary traditions and exceptional wines, offering a plethora of options to satisfy every palate. Here are some perfect pairings that will elevate your gastronomic adventure:

  1. Burrata and Primitivo: Start your culinary journey with a classic pairing of creamy, luscious burrata cheese and a glass of locally produced Primitivo wine. The creamy texture and mild flavor of the burrata beautifully complement the bold and fruity notes of the Primitivo, creating a harmonious balance on the palate.
  2. Orecchiette Pasta with Cime di Rapa and Verdeca: Indulge in the flavors of the region with a plate of freshly made orecchiette pasta topped with sautéed cime di rapa (broccoli rabe). This traditional dish pairs wonderfully with a crisp and refreshing glass of local Verdeca wine. The vibrant herbal notes of the Verdeca enhance the earthy flavors of the greens, creating a delightful combination.
  3. Seafood and Fiano: As Ostuni is situated along the Adriatic Sea, it comes as no surprise that seafood plays a prominent role in the local cuisine. Pair a plate of freshly grilled fish or succulent seafood risotto with a glass of Fiano wine. The citrusy and floral undertones of the Fiano accentuate the delicate flavors of the seafood, resulting in a match made in culinary heaven.
  4. Pasticciotto and Moscato: Conclude your meal on a sweet note with a traditional Puglian dessert, pasticciotto, paired with a glass of Moscato. The buttery and flaky crust of the pasticciotto, filled with luscious custard, perfectly complements the sweet and aromatic qualities of Moscato. This combination is a delightful indulgence for your taste buds.

Exploring the Local Markets

When it comes to immersing yourself in the culinary delights of Ostuni, exploring the local markets is an absolute must. These vibrant hubs of activity offer a sensory experience like no other, allowing you to witness the region’s rich food culture firsthand. Here are some highlights to look out for:

  1. Shopping for Ingredients: Step into the bustling market stalls and be greeted by a kaleidoscope of fresh produce, from plump tomatoes and fragrant herbs to vibrant fruits and vegetables. The local farmers take immense pride in their offerings, ensuring that only the finest and highest quality ingredients make it to the market. As you peruse the stalls, breathe in the intoxicating aromas and let your senses guide you towards the best flavors Ostuni has to offer.
  2. Buying Local Wines: While the markets may be a haven for foodies, they also house a treasure trove of local wines. Don’t miss the opportunity to indulge in the renowned Puglian wines that perfectly complement Ostuni’s culinary scene. From the rich and robust Primitivo to the crisp and refreshing Fiano, there is a wine for every palate. Engage with the knowledgeable vendors who are more than happy to share their expertise and recommendations, ensuring you find the perfect bottle to accompany your gastronomic adventure.

Shopping for Ingredients

When it comes to immersing yourself in the culinary culture of Ostuni, a visit to the local markets is a must. Here, you’ll find an abundance of fresh and authentic ingredients that are essential for creating traditional dishes. As you wander through the lively stalls, you’ll come across colorful displays of locally sourced fruits, vegetables, meats, and seafood. Don’t forget to pick up some of the region’s famous olive oil, which is considered some of the best in the world. The markets also offer a selection of local wines, allowing you to pair your ingredients with the perfect bottle. With the guidance of friendly vendors, you can learn about the different flavor profiles and characteristics of the various wines, elevating your culinary experience.

When visiting Ostuni, one must not miss the opportunity to indulge in the region’s exceptional wines. The distinct terroir and favorable climate of the area produce a variety of exceptional grape varietals that are a delight to the palate. Here is a guide on buying local wines and where to find them.

  1. Explore Local Wine Shops: Start your wine-buying journey by exploring the local wine shops in Ostuni. These establishments are curated by experts who have a deep understanding of the region’s wines and can guide you in selecting the perfect bottle. Some of the renowned wine shops in Ostuni include Capricci Di Vino and Enoteca Pasquale.
  2. Visit Vineyards and Cellars: For a more immersive experience, consider visiting the vineyards and cellars in the surrounding countryside. Many wineries offer tours and tastings, allowing you to learn about the winemaking process firsthand and sample their exquisite creations. Notable vineyards in the area include Masseria Il Frantoio and Polvanera.
  3. Participate in Wine Festivals: To truly embrace the local wine culture, plan your visit around one of Ostuni’s vibrant wine festivals. These lively events showcase the diversity of wines produced in the region and offer an opportunity to meet local winemakers. The White Wine City Festival and Calici di Stelle are two popular festivals that attract wine enthusiasts from far and wide.
  4. Seek Local Recommendations: Don’t hesitate to ask locals for their recommendations when it comes to buying local wines. The people of Ostuni have a deep-rooted appreciation for their regional wines and can provide invaluable insights into hidden gems and up-and-coming winemakers. Strike up a conversation with restaurant owners, sommeliers, or friendly locals, and you might just uncover a memorable bottle.
  5. Consider Shipping Options: If you find yourself falling in love with a particular wine, but cannot take it with you due to travel constraints, inquire if the winery offers shipping services. Many vineyards in the area have international shipping options, allowing you to bring a taste of Ostuni’s remarkable wine back home.

Tips for Visiting Food and Wine Festivals

Attending food and wine festivals is a delightful way to immerse yourself in the culinary culture of Ostuni. These festivals offer a unique opportunity to taste a variety of local dishes and wines, as well as to engage with local producers and chefs. To make the most of your experience, here are some valuable tips to keep in mind:

  1. Plan Your Trip: Before attending a food and wine festival in Ostuni, do some research and mark the dates on your calendar. Check the festival’s website or social media pages for details on participating vendors, scheduled events, and ticket prices. Some festivals may require advance booking, so make sure to secure your spot in advance.
  2. What to Expect: Food and wine festivals in Ostuni are known for their lively atmosphere and abundance of flavors. You can expect to find a wide range of food stalls offering traditional local dishes such as orecchiette pasta, burrata cheese, and taralli bread. Similarly, local wineries showcase their finest wines, including the crisp white wines made from the Verdeca grape and the rich red varieties like Primitivo and Negroamaro. Be prepared for crowds and long queues, especially during peak hours.
  3. Taste Strategically: With so many tempting food options, it can be overwhelming to decide what to try. Take a walk around the festival before making your choices, and don’t be afraid to ask vendors for recommendations. Consider sharing dishes with your companions to sample a wider variety. Also, be mindful of your alcohol consumption to fully appreciate the flavors without overindulging.
  4. Engage with Producers and Chefs: Food and wine festivals often feature cooking demonstrations, workshops, and interactive activities. Take advantage of these opportunities to learn from local experts. Engage in conversations, ask questions, and discover the stories behind the dishes and wines. This personal interaction adds depth to your experience and enhances your appreciation for the culinary traditions of Ostuni.
  5. Enjoy the Surroundings: While the food and wine are the highlights, don’t forget to take in the ambiance of the festival and its surroundings. Many festivals are held in picturesque locations, such as ancient courtyards or historic squares. Take a moment to appreciate the architectural beauty and soak in the vibrant atmosphere that accompanies these events.

Planning Your Trip

When it comes to planning your gastronomic adventure in Ostuni, there are a few key considerations to keep in mind. Here are some tips to ensure that your trip is a culinary delight:

1 Research the Local Food Scene

  • Start by researching the local food scene in Ostuni. Look for popular dishes that are unique to the region. Some must-try dishes include orecchiette pasta with tomato sauce, burrata cheese, and seafood specialties like grilled octopus.
  • Take note of authentic ingredients used in traditional recipes. The use of extra virgin olive oil, fresh herbs, and locally sourced vegetables is prevalent in Ostuni’s cuisine. Make sure to indulge in the flavors of the region by trying dishes made with these ingredients.

2 Visit Local Wineries

  • To truly experience the gastronomy of Ostuni, a visit to the local wineries is a must. Take a wine tour and learn about the different varietals produced in the region.
  • Discover the process of wine-making and taste the local wines. With its sunny climate and fertile soil, Ostuni produces excellent wines, including the popular Primitivo and Negroamaro varietals.

3 Find the Perfect Meal

  • Explore the local restaurants in Ostuni, where you can indulge in authentic and flavorful dishes. Look for establishments that offer a diverse range of culinary experiences, from traditional trattorias to modern fusion cuisine.
  • Seek recommendations from locals or check online reviews to find the best places to dine. Be sure to ask the restaurant staff for their expert advice on wine pairings to enhance your dining experience.

4 Explore the Local Markets

  • Immerse yourself in the local culture by visiting the bustling markets of Ostuni. Here, you can shop for fresh ingredients used in traditional recipes and interact with local vendors.
  • Don’t forget to browse through the selection of local wines available at the markets. This is an excellent opportunity to bring a piece of Ostuni’s gastronomy back home with you.

5. Prepare for Food and Wine Festivals

  • If you’re fortunate to visit during a food and wine festival, plan your trip accordingly. These festivals showcase the region’s culinary delights and offer a chance to mingle with local producers and enthusiasts.
  • Research the festival schedule and make reservations if necessary. Be prepared to enjoy exquisite food tastings, wine pairings, and live entertainment.

What to Expect

When embarking on a gastronomic adventure in Ostuni, you can expect an unforgettable journey filled with delectable dishes, exquisite wines, and captivating experiences. Here are some key things to expect during your food and wine exploration:

1 Exploring the Local Food Scene

  • Popular Dishes: Indulge in culinary delights such as “orecchiette con le cime di rapa” (pasta with turnip tops) and “fave e cicorie” (fava beans and chicory).
  • Authentic Ingredients: Savor the flavors of locally sourced ingredients like extra virgin olive oil, fresh seafood, and aromatic herbs.

2 Ostuni Wine Tour

  • Visiting Local Wineries: Embark on a wine tour and visit charming wineries nestled in the picturesque countryside, where you can witness the winemaking process firsthand.
  • Learning About the Different Varietals: Discover the unique characteristics of Ostuni’s indigenous grape varietals, including Primitivo, Negroamaro, and Verdeca.

3 Where to Enjoy the Perfect Meal

  • Local Restaurants: Delight your taste buds at traditional trattorias and fine dining establishments that showcase the region’s culinary heritage with innovative twists.
  • Best Pairings: Experience the art of food and wine pairing as expert sommeliers guide you towards harmonious combinations that elevate the flavors of both the dishes and wines.

4 Exploring the Local Markets

  • Shopping for Ingredients: Immerse yourself in the vibrant atmosphere of local markets, where you can select fresh produce, cheeses, and other ingredients to create your own culinary creations.
  • Buying Local Wines: Take advantage of the opportunity to purchase bottles of renowned Ostuni wines directly from the winemakers, allowing you to prolong the flavors of your gastronomic adventure.

5 Tips for Visiting Food and Wine Festivals

  • Planning Your Trip: Check the local event calendar to coincide your visit with the exciting food and wine festivals that showcase the region’s rich culinary traditions.
  • What to Expect: Get ready to indulge in tantalizing tastings, cooking demonstrations, cultural exhibitions, and live music, immersing yourself in the festive ambiance of Ostuni’s vibrant food and wine scene.


If you’re ever in the vicinity of Ostuni, be sure to pay a visit to the town’s famous food and wine. The region is known for its unique and delicious products, and the town’s restaurants are no exception. From vegetarian pizzas to classic risottos, there’s something for everyone in Ostuni’s food scene. And, of course, there’s no shortage of wine options. If you’re looking for a gastronomic adventure, you’ll love exploring Ostuni’s food and wine scene. So be sure to check it out when you’re in the area!

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