Heffort Sports Village Restaurant

Heffort Sports Village Restaurant

Heffort Restaurant is within Heffort Sports Village. It stands at the highest point of the town Parabita, meaning that the sea and landscape can be seen from the first floor dining area. It’s an unusual site for a top quality eatery, but well worth a visit.

Depending on the time of day, there may well be a football match or children in the park area when you arrive. The village can be used by the whole family, as is the way of life in Italy.

There are two elegant rooms with 120 covers and large French windows leading onto a vast terrace, which is used for summer dining.

Part of the complex is a stylish modern bar and café, serving sweet and savoury snacks, ice cream (gelato) and soft drinks. The clean modern lines provide a comfortable and stylish place to meet during the day.
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Alle Due Corti Restaurant

Alle Due Corti Restaurant

Ristorante Alle Due Corti, Lecce

Although the locals call the food at this restaurant ‘cucina povera’, which literally means food of the poor, Alle Due Corti, serves anything but poor food. The locally produced ingredients are the perfect starting point for the expertise of the grandmother chef, Rosalba, who runs the kitchen. She is famous all over Italy for her culinary creations, has appeared on television and has written books on speciality foods of Salento.

Apart from the exquisite sensory experience of the food, the waiters are friendly and speak both Italian and English. Lecce has many top rated restaurants, but Alle Due Corti is a truly traditional, Italian family trattoria.  The menu is written in Salentino (not Italian) for the locals and English for the convenience of tourists.

The location is about 200 meters away from the main square but that’s why the character is so different from the main tourist area. This is where the locals go in Lecce to eat good authentic food. The ambience is simple and inviting with a lively atmosphere.

One trip advisor contributor says he has eaten in some of the top restaurants in the world over the past forty years, and Alle Due Corti is up there with the best.

Another contributor writes that the food was phenomenal, simple, traditional and spectacularly well done. They loved every dish they tried and the prices were very reasonable.

A typical meal for two can cost around €50, including half a carafe of excellent, local wine. If you like a good dessert to finish your meal with an overload of pleasure, this is the place for you.

It’s worth noting that, The ‘Lonely Planet Guide’, also recommends Alle Due Corti, as do local hotels.

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Stunning Local Beaches

As part of your Cooking Holiday, you will have the opportunity to visit stunning local beaches. Ideal for a stroll or catching the rays.

The video below is an example to whet your appetite.

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Salento, Puglia

Salento, Puglia

Where in the World is Salento?

Let’s keep it simple; think of the very tip of the heel of Italy. If you’ve had the pleasure of visiting Italy, but never been further south than Naples, let us introduce you to Salento, a well kept secret, the place the Italians go to holiday!

With it’s magnificent landscapes and crystalline seas, the area gives you the opportunity to explore and discover this pure and unspoiled Salento peninsula (peninsula salentina), limestone rock dividing the Adriatic Sea from the Ionian Sea. But not many people know about Salento, apart from typical Italian tourists, who have been travelling to its shores every August for centuries. Once you spend time in Salento, you begin to think it’s the best part of Italy.

A CULTURAL MIX

Salento is like no other place in Italy. The little coastal towns seem like old-fashioned seaside paradises, each with its unique culture and history. It’s Italy, but it also seems to be a bit of Greece, Turkey and what the Salentini call “Porta d’Oriente” – gateway to the east.

Salento’s geographical location was perfect for invaders attacking from the sea, so there are remnants and ruins of lighthouses, bastions surrounding sea towns, castle walls, moats and towers dotting the coastline – reminders of the largely unsuccessful attempts to protects its inhabitants.

There are still parts of Salento where an ancient version of the Greek language is spoken, and the bleached-white buildings stacked on hillsides certainly bring to mind that part of the world.

Each invasion and occupation left a mark on the region, creating a melting pot of cultures instead of one homogeneous genetic stamp. Because the area is so lightly travelled by outsiders, you really feel that you are the first one to discover it all.

LANGUAGE

The language spoken has been influenced by history but in general can be defined s Pugliese (Apuglian), belonging to the southern typology. However, distinctive dialects are spoken in pockets throughout the countryside.

TOURISM

The summer season starts in May and ends in October, when the weather is invariably hot and clear. There is an 18% to 30% rise in tourism, each and every year. In the past, the economy was based on the international wine and oil commerce. Nowadays, the most important activities are based on fishing and the growing tourism sector. For most of the year, there isn’t a shortage of sunshine, blue skies and warmth.

FOOD, GLORIOUS FOOD

Farming is the major industry in Puglia, with acres of fruit and olive trees, creating wonderful scenery and the pure olive oil is renowned. As well as fresh fish caught locally, and fresh olives, Green Olives on Treetomatoes and vegetables, Apulia produces one-tenth of the wine drunk in Europe. The buffalo feed on the lush grasses to produce, arguably the best Mozzarella cheese in Italy. The soil is very fertile and some of the finest olive trees and grapes grow here.

The sea will provide you with wonderful fresh fish meals, caught on the day by the local fishermen and prepared at local restaurants, or you may prefer to take up a rod and catch your own from the shore. Either way you will also have the choice of accompanying your meal with a glass or two of the regions delicious and inexpensive wines.

Cooking with fresh, natural, local ingredients and eating are a major part of Salento life. Each region has it’s own speciality dishes and one of life’s pleasures is to learn the simple, easy methods used to produce delicious, healthy, food.

A quaint and welcome custom is the offering of free aperitivi called stuzziciono – little snacks when you go to a bar for drinks and the coffee bars will automatically give you a free cup of bottled water to chase your cappucino. There are so many little customs that will seem quirky to visitors but they are just  part of the natural flow of life in Salento.

WHAT IS THERE TO DO?

The whole region is laced with historic sites and places of interest to visit. If stunning architecture is of interest, you will find the most beautiful and important religious and historical buildings.

If you prefer a relaxing time on the beach you can choose a different beach every day to enjoy some of the cleanest sea waters in Europe. Alternatively, there is sailing, water sports, diving and swimming in unpolluted seas.

The Salento coast is characterised by a variety of landscapes: the clear, fine sandy beaches, famous caves, Italian prehistoric settlements and Grotta Zinzulusa, ‘the pearl of caves’, owing its name to the dialect word zinzuli (rags) used by fishermen to describe the beautiful stalactites and stalagmites.

FESTAS/FIESTAS

There are hundreds of celebrations (civil and religious), which light up the little towns throughout Salento. The streets are decorated with elaborate lighting and much partying is done all year. Unusually, celebrations would start with fireworks and church bells ringing during the daytime. In the evenings, entire families walk, sit and generally enjoy the atmosphere of fun, food and company.

Summing up, Salento has everything from simplicity to the exotic. Three words that bathe the mind in thoughts of an idyllic place to visit and explore are: Space, Quiet, Beauty.

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