& Croatia

The Great Alternative trail



Green in nature. Green on the table.

For every Beyond Biking trip, we sample the very best traditional cuisine of the region we are travelling in. Every evening, after an exhilarating day of pedal pushing, you’ll be treated to a delicious local meal.

Despite its small population (just over two million) Slovenia boasts a bounty of tasty dishes and a long culinary tradition, strongly influenced by its neighbours, Italy, Austria and Hungary, which makes for an interesting mix of Alpine, central European and Mediterranean flavours. Light, fluffy pastries and subtly-flavoured fresh pasta dishes demonstrate the influence of Italy, while various takes on the Austrian strudel can be found in most bakeries. Stewy meat dishes served with dumplings show that traditional central European dishes are hugely popular in Slovenia also.

The use of seasonal produce is of crucial importance in the Slovene kitchen, and food sustainability plays an important role in green Slovenia. The richness of the Slovene territory is reflected in homemade favourites such as the protected Carniolan sausage, the typical sweet of Bled island called potica and Idrija žlikrofi, pasta stuffed with potato, bacon and onions in a characteristic crescent shape. The most popular prepared meat in Slovenia is pršut, an air-cured ham from the Karst region that is not unlike Italian prosciutto. The ham is salted and hung outdoors to dry in the autumn; it is said to get its distinctive taste from the burja, the north-east winds of the region.

Almost half of all wine that is produced in Slovenia comes from the Primorska region where you will be biking. The districts of Vipava Valley and Goriška Brda mainly produce white wines, while most of the red wines come from the districts of Karst and Slovenian Istra. Brda, often referred to as the ‘Tuscany of Slovenia,’ is best known for its Rebula white wine and Merlot-Cabernet blends. What makes the Primorska region of Slovenia such a great place for growing different types of wine grape varieties is its great climate, combining Mediterranean and alpine influences. Summers are very hot and usually very dry. Winters are also mild, so Primorska has everything necessary for growing premium wine grapes. Lots of wine producers from Primorska region are recognised internationally, and their wines can be found in many great restaurants around the world. But it’s not all about wine in Slovenia – quality craft beer is also popular, which is unsurprising given that Slovenia is the 6th largest producer of hops worldwide.


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