A Taste of Belluno: Discovering Authentic Veneto Cuisine

By: Nicole Dickerson / Last updated: November 19, 2023

Estimated reading time: 3 minutes


Casunziei - half-moon-shaped ravioli
Casunziei – half-moon-shaped ravioli

Guide to Veneto Gastronomy and Cuisine: Read more

Regional Cuisine:

Padua, Rovigo, Treviso, Venice, Verona, Vicenza

Belluno is situated high up in the Alps on the Austrian border amidst the Dolomites, which significantly influence the cuisine and economy of the region.


In Belluno’s Ampezzo Valley, the locals make carafòi for special occasions like birthdays, weddings, religious events, and Carnival. Carafòi is a fried, sweet pastry made from flour, eggs, sugar, butter, oil, and grappa. Every family has its secret ingredient, and the recipes are handed down generationally. First, the dough is fried until golden brown; then, the carafòi are sprinkled with powdered sugar to finish.


Casunziei is half-moon-shaped, ravioli-like pasta savored widely throughout Belluno. They’re often stuffed with beetroot, though potato-filled casunziei and many other variations exist. The pasta dough is very thin, and casunziei are frequently served with butter, poppy seeds, and grated Parmigiano Reggiano.


Chenedi is a delicious dumpling that is typical of the province of Belluno. They’re made with flour, stale bread soaked in milk, speck, and other cured meats, eggs, chives, and parsley. Then, the dumplings are cooked in chicken broth and served dry or with hot broth for the perfect alpine meal.


A sweet specialty of the region, kodinzon is a purée of various local apples mixed with sponcio cornmeal, a particular type of cornmeal from Belluno. The purée is spread out and left to dry in the sun, then cut into bars for a high-energy treat.

Pan de Belun

Pan de belun is a traditional cake made of walnuts, sponcio cornmeal, hazelnuts, poppy seeds, and chocolate. Unfortunately, the origins of pan de belun have been lost over the years, but it’s a recipe passed down from generation to generation.


In Belluno, a specialty sausage made from beef and pork seasoned with white wine and spices is often enjoyed. In addition, you’ll find pastin grilled, sliced, and served with polenta or wrapped in a baguette-like bread at festivals.


Piave is the typical cheese of Belluno, named for the river which runs through the region. It has a sweet, milky flavor, which becomes more intense and riper as the cheese ages. Piave comes in a variety of styles:

  • Fresco (fresh)
  • Mezzano – aged 60-80 days
  • Vecchio—aged more than 180 days
  • Vecchio Selezione Oro—aged for 12 months
  • Vecchio Riserva—aged for 18 months or more

The matured versions are often used to flavor risotto. While fried Piave served with polenta and sauerkraut makes up a traditional Belluno dish called formai frit.


Beyond Piave, Schiz is another famous cheese in the region. The name comes from schizza, meaning squirt, which is the excess cheese that seeps out of the molds. Traditionally, schiz cheese was made in mountain huts from fresh milk curd directly from the cow. It is a soft, fresh, creamy cheese often served with polenta and mushrooms.

While in Belluno, keep an eye out for schiz impanato, a fried version of this specialty cheese. It’s prepared by dipping slices of schiz, first in egg and then in breadcrumbs. The breaded cheese is then fried until golden brown, seasoned with salt, and often served with wild mushrooms.


The Veneto Region in Italy offers a variety of experiences for wine enthusiasts. From the quaint wine villages of Valpolicella to the vibrant Prosecco wine country, the region is known for producing famous wines like Amarone, Prosecco, and Soave, making it a prime destination for those passionate about wine.

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Nicole Dickerson

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