Agriturismo Collecera is a fantastic agriturismo for those looking for a full food and lodging service in Abruzzo that is both near to Pescara and the olive groves of Loreta Aprutino. A short[ish] side-road led us to a very pleasant and tranquil group of white buildings, one the main house, 3 terraced guest lodges and the last the dining area of the agriturismo, all overlooking gently rolling vistas of groves and fields.
We arrived at Collecera after a visit to Loreta Aprutino one Sunday afternoon, much to the owners’ surprise (due to their off-the-beaten track location, Sunday’s generally mean just friends & family for lunch) – how guilty did we feel! Not very. But we were embraced with open arms and rapidly ushered in and seated. Aldo di Zio is the name of proprietor and he is the chef and his terribly kind, elegant & smiley wife helps him. Their daughter is studying in Manchester which is the reason I guess for their few words of English. Be prepared, this is quite rare in Abruzzo.
After exchanging pleasantries we relaxed into the familiar pattern of waiting to be served upon with great portions of delectable antipasti, pasta & carne of every conceivable nature – and we were not disappointed. Some of the best hams we have had in Abruzzo were served with juicy cantaloupe melon slices. The chilled, oaky homemade wine (slightly strong almost fortified in flavour) revitalised the palate after the cloying 29° heat outside…
Pasta was a scrummy home-made (apparently from scratch in half-an-hour!) “Fettuccine con le pallottine”, and portions were just right.
Despite recent concerns about our capacity for eating three-course Italian lunches, we were told Collecera Agriturismo ‘misto carne’ was not to be missed, so of course we caved in. Slightly longer than usual wait, but made bearable by the gentle hum & excitement of the televised motor-cycle grand prix in the background, meant one of us could ogle Brad Pitt who was attending the race with son Maddox.
Delectable sausages, tender lamb and the best fillet of beef steak we have had in Italy, were wolfed down with atypical aplomb on our parts. A wonderful discovery and accompaniment was the local pepperoncino fried with beaten eggs, a little like a French piperade.
Somehow we were then also coerced into having pudding, a yummy kiwi fruit semi-freddo torta, and small home-made Lemonicello – which was sharp rather than sugary sweet and the perfect digestive.
We staggered blinking, bloated (in a nice way) and slightly bewildered back into the fierce sunlight, to watch bees and other happy buzzy things flirting madly with an acacia[?] tree that was in full flower, and then onwards to Chieti…with molto gentile directions from the agriturismo’s owners, family & friends. Sorry to sound gushing but really they were complete sweeties, so go just to enjoy real Italian hospitality at its best.
Slightly more expensive than other places (€50 all in for 2 including wine), but considering the delicacy of the ham and wonderful fillet of steak great value for money and worth paying the additional 20 euros for.
Quality of Food: 9/10
Value for Money: 9/10
Cost: 50 euros for 2 people including house wine
Address: Collecera Agriturismo, C.da Gallo 2-, Loreto, 65014, PE
Tel: (+39) 0328 015059
Mobile: (+39) 328 0150598
cera = wax