Italy holds the reigning flag of slow food. It is, afterall, the movement’s official birthplace, dating back to 1986 in Piedmont, Italy. As one of the country’s northern most regions, encircled by the Alps and directly touching France and Switzerland, it’s no wonder a love for food and nature collided into an international movement here—where wine pours from vines and where you can graze for breakfast on meadows of rice and corn.
Travel south some 200 miles to Tuscany, and you’ll meet an even older articulation of slow food—cantucci—most commonly known to us foreigners, as biscotti. The twice-baked crunchy cookie is reported to have been a survivalist food (think modern day granola bar), munched by travelers and Roman warriors along their journeys. With the heralding of the Renaissance, biscotti found life again in the perfect pairing—dipped into a glass of vin santo, Italian dessert wine, for just the right sweetness and crunch. It became something to gather around, to celebrate and to luxuriate in, slowly.