Italian flavors: Polesano White Garlic

Sep 23, 2023 287

The presence of garlic in the Polesine area dates from the Romans who built reclamation works and created agricultural land by greatly modifying the hydrogeology of the area. Evidence of this comes from the writings of Perretto and Marangano in the publication “La Centuriazione dell’Agro di Adria” in which the cultivation of garlic is described as one of the most widespread of the time and even mentioned by Virgil in the “Georgics”.

Later in the medieval period, Bocchi in the ”Annali Pollicinensi“ describes how the inhabitants of Rovigo were ordered to cultivate ”l’alio loco bono" in their plots.

Then, in the 16th century, in the publications of the Accademia dei Concordi of Rovigo, there is mention of the production of garlic as an activity of particular importance for the area of Selva, the historical name of several municipalities of the current PDO production area.

By the middle of the 20th century, garlic was considered an industrial crop, as affirmed in a document by Zennaro in 1949. Over the centuries, a significant commercial activity formed around local garlic, which allowed this product to play an important role in the economy of the area.

The Product

Aglio Bianco Polesano DOP is characterized by a uniformly bright white bulb of regular, compact shape. The PDO product is obtained from local ecotypes, as well as the Avorio variety, selected from the same ecotypes. Its main characteristics are a high yield of dry matter which makes it very storable and a particular aromatic profile, which is less pungent and more persistent with pleasing notes of freshly cut grass or sweet fruit.

The Area

Due to the type of soil and the typical temperate-dry climatic conditions, the geographical area of Polesine is particularly favourable for the production of Aglio Bianco Polesano DOP and is surely one of the factors responsible for the characteristics and quality of this product.

Thanks to the presence of the Po and Adige rivers that border the south and the north of the Polesine area and that, before today's embankments repeatedly flooded the plain over the centuries, the soils has a medium, well-drained and porous texture and is very fertile.

The mineral composition of these soils is also critical: the high content of phosphorus and potassium is responsible for the typical white colour and good shelf life of the product, while calcium and magnesium help to improve the quality of the bulbs.

By Consorzio di tutela Aglio bianco polesano

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