To taste some of Italy’s most exciting culinary scene in the heart of wine country. Nordelaia is a unique spot where couples can press pause and indulge in exceptional food and outstanding wine with the breathtaking backdrop of the rolling landscape of Southern Piedmont.
Ideal for those with an appetite for fine food and rich history, Nordelaia is a tranquil haven in the gastronomic region of Piedmont. Each meal is a sensory adventure that will have you discussing the first mouthful for days. This is wine country and whether you experience it with a personalised wine tasting after a day roaming the vineyards or enjoy it from a chilled glass poolside, Nordelaia provides all the comforts and inspiration you might need. If tasting your way around Italy is part of your honeymoon plan, Piedmont is an essential stop and Nordelaia is the perfect and certainly the most luxurious destination from which to explore it.
Set the scene
There is a fairy-tale-like quality as one approaches Nordelaia for the first time. Immediately striking is the enchanting glass house set on a hill-top overlooking its own private vineyard. Couples soak up the view over leisurely breakfasts of homemade croissants, fresh fruit, and hazelnut cakes made with Piedmontese hazelnuts as they plan their day ahead. Adventurous duos skip off for mornings of wine tasting, truffle hunting, and a medley of sun-soaked hikes whilst those looking to slow down and press the reset button dip between the two pools before gently making their way to the spa. Come evening, as the sun dips behind the hills guests enjoy expertly mixed cocktails before entering into the next phase of magic – supper.
Food and drink
It is often said that the heart of the home is the kitchen. At Nordelaia, the heart lies in its two exquisite restaurants. Italy is a destination famed, if not fetishised, for its food. But far from the gargantuan bowls of spaghetti and fluorescent pizzas that seem to flood our daily Instagram feeds, Nordelaia offers cuisine that pushes boundaries, challenges classical ideas, and truly inspires. Essential to any stay at Nordelaia is dinner at their fine dining restaurant, L’Orto. Centred around the seasons, there are two menus to choose from, one pescatarian and one that shines the spotlight solely on vegetables. A bold and perhaps forward move for a restaurant that is on its way to receiving Michelin star status but one that will undoubtedly leave you speechless. Humble celeriac is transformed into pappardelle ribbons amidst a silky cheese sauce made with Fiandino Riserva before being finished with cracked black pepper and a surprising addition of freeze-dried raspberry. An homage to the classic cacio e pepe that is utterly delicious. Risotto with Sicilian avocado and prawn Crudo manages to carry both a creaminess and feather-like lightness. Each dish questions and contradicts all you thought you knew about food and leaves you with an entirely new sensation. Less formal, but no less delicious, is the Bistro. Breakfast is served à la carte and celebrates the best of the local surrounding produce. Like L’Orto, the evening menu follows the tune of the seasons. Dishes of fusilloni with mussels and pink prawns or catch of the day with mint marinated courgettes and citrus ricotta read seemingly simple but exceed all expectations. The stand-out dish is the crispy egg that arrives crowned in cloudlike soufflé of Fiandino, bagna cauda, and pepper compote. There to ensure your dinner is paired with the perfect wine is Nordelaia’s expert sommelier. An encyclopedia of wine knowledge infused with charm, he has a knack for mind-reading and will, in wizard-like fashion, deliver what is likely to be the best bottle of wine you have ever tasted.
Inspired by the rhythm of the seasons and plush surrounding landscape, rooms at Nordelaia are spacious and well-lit. Soft morning light pours in through the large sash windows and the only sound is that of the local birds. Walls of burnt umber, forest green, or crisp autumn yellow are complemented with soft fabrics, exposed wood, and minimal yet refined design. The furnishings and colour palates of each room vary, meaning that each stay at Nordelaia is unique to the next. High above the treetops are the Antico suites offering a bird’s eye view over the surrounding vineyards and stunning infinity pool. Couples can enjoy a glass of Nordelaia rosé on their private terrace as they unwind to the quiet hum of nature. For ultimate luxury, the Estate suite is the room to choose. A grand suite with a luxuriously large bathroom, it is the most romantic of all of Nordelaia’s rooms. The grand four-poster bed with its marshmallow soft mattress and honey-coloured drapes is almost too irresistible to leave, were it not for the promise of breakfast.
Originally an 800-year-old farmhouse, Nordelaia was constructed with careful consideration of the traditional style. Although offering all the contemporary comforts one looks for in a luxury hotel, the connection to the surrounding nature and environment is evident throughout the design. The hotel prides itself on celebrating the riches and traditions of the local region and with every modern touch comes a nod to the bounteous heritage of Piedmont.
Although not explicitly adults only, Nordelaia is a place that encourages deep relaxation paired with innovative culinary experiences. Whilst wine tasting and seven-course dinner menus are manageable options with children in tow, they are perhaps better suited to a more mature palate. This is a hotel that invites couples to leave the day-to-day concerns of life behind and truly indulge in quality time together.
Couples move noticeably slower as they exit the spa, floating with an almost trancelike serenity as they make their way back to the pool. Following the heritage-led theme, traditional remedies are the focus here. Partnering with Comfort Zone, the treatment menu includes detoxifying Ayurvedic massage, scrubs featuring Rhyolite volcanic powder, and traditional Mediterranean lymphatic drainage. This is a spa rooted in deep restoration as opposed to cosmetic remedy. Couples step daintily into the spa by way of the Kneipp stepping pools (one of the oldest forms of treatment, dating back to Ancient Rome) and make their way via steam room and ice shower to a traditional Banja sauna that is complemented by somewhat surprising but rather beautiful hand-sewn hats (designed to protect one’s head from the extreme heat). Once the knots of the day have steamed away, couples settle into cups of warm mountain tea as they sink into creamy cotton beanbags in their own relaxation area.
Perched on a vine-covered hillside overlooking the practically untouched countryside of the Monferrat area of Piedmont, Nordelaia is a world away from the clutter and claustrophobia that has been the fate of so many other Italian honeymoon hotspots. This handsome area of Italy remains unspoiled with a bounty rich in picturesque views, innovative flavours, and new experiences. Neighbours to Lombardy and Liguria, this is a honeypot of exciting culture and novel cuisine. Moments away is the historic town of Cremolino with its threadlike winding streets, majestic castle, and noteworthy wine bar Maninvino. Come Aperitivo hour creatives clad in next season’s fashion week looks spill out onto the pavements wine in hand. Having fled the intolerable sweltering streets of high-season Milan, they settle into laidback plates of antipasti and enjoy the breeze of these greener, fresher lands. For those all too tempted by the promise of Italian tailoring, the beautiful boutiques of Genoa are but 30 minutes away. For couples eager to leave all city life behind, there is the Capanne di Marcarolo Natural Regional Park with its diverse wildlife, glittering lakes, and extensive hiking paths.
Junior Suites from: £500