We deliver free of charge from CHF 100.


Your shopping cart is empty

The truffle hunt in Piedmont is one of the most fascinating aspects in the world of mushrooms. The cultivation of truffles is very difficult and does not bring the expected results. For this reason, hunting in different truffle areas is still the best way to harvest the precious underground mushroom. Finding truffles is not easy, there are very strict regulations to protect this culinary gift of the earth as well. But before we go into the truffle hunt and all its challenges, let’s first clarify some of the essentials.

What are truffles?

Italienischer Trüffelhund von Di Bennardo

Truffle can be described as a mushroom that grows underground and is hard to get or find. Truffles belong to the tubular mushroom family.

In fact, it is an underground mushroom that grows near the roots of trees and can be very difficult to harvest as it is between 5 and 30 cm underground. For this reason, truffles are usually harvested in the wild by trained pigs (truffle pigs), but especially nowadays by dogs (truffle dogs).

In the forest, truffles form a symbiotic relationship with the roots of several tree species – especially beech, poplar, oak, birch, hornbeam, hazel and pine. These noble tubers prefer clay or calcareous soils that are well drained and neutral or alkaline. Depending on the type of truffle, they bear fruit all year round and, in contrast to above-ground mushrooms, do not form stems or caps. This means that the spore-containing part of the truffle is completely enclosed.

The origin of the word truffle seems to be the Latin term ‘tuber,’ meaning swelling or lump that later became ‘truffle’ and from which various European terms originated, such as the Italian word ‘tartufo’.

In Italy, the prized black and white winter truffles are found in Piedmont, Umbria, Emilia Romagna, Tuscany, Lazio, Abruzzo and Molise. But can you just go and look for real truffles? Or what do aspiring collectors need to find truffles?

What do you need to find truffles?


Pigs were originally used for truffle hunting. Pigs have a very good sense of smell and can easily locate the underground mushrooms. But pigs have one disadvantage: They are greedy and immediately eat the truffles they find. Nevertheless, they played an important role in the truffle hunt for their efficiency and sense of smell.

On the noble farms, the pigs were first replaced by dogs: The faithful and tame friend of man is considered much more elegant and refined in his truffle hunt. The use of the dog spread quickly and the truffle pig was used less and less.

Today, the law prohibits the use of pigs in Italy because the animal causes great damage to the forest ecosystem during its excavations. The use of dogs is mandatory, as they are the only animal that can find the exact location of the truffle without damaging the ground.

In Italy, the law stipulates that the dog must be specially trained for truffle hunting.

A trained truffle tracking dog is therefore indispensable and training is not cheap, a well-trained dog can quickly cost up to 5000 euros. However, it is not mandatory to buy an already trained dog or to contact a professional dog handler. With great care and patience it is possible to train a dog yourself. If the dog is a puppy, you start with simple games that gradually become more complex exercises.

Every dog with a good nose is suitable for the truffle hunt, but characteristics such as intelligence, concentration, stamina and dedication are also very important. A dog needs all of this to master its training and prove itself to be a good truffle-sniffing dog.

However, tradition considers some breeds to be the best when it comes to finding truffles:

Bracco Italiano, English Pointer, Spinone Italiano, Cocker Spaniel, Jack Russel, Griffon and Lagotto Romagnolo.

Italienischer frischer Alba Tüffel Piemont von Di Bennardo


What is the difference between white and black truffles?

weisser frischer Trüffel von Di Bennardo

White truffle

People often ask themselves the question: White or black truffle?

White truffles are smooth with a slight yellow hue. They are the spicier of the two, with an intoxicating musk aroma and a garlic-like taste. Both the taste and smell of white truffles can easily overwhelm a dish. Therefore, they are usually sparingly shaved over pasta or used as a garnish. White truffles are served raw, as they lose taste and quality if they are too hot.

Italienischer ganzer schwarzer Sommertrüffel von Di Bennardo

Black truffle

Black truffles have a rough, stiff appearance, similar to the bark of a tree. Its taste is more subtle than that of white truffles, accompanied by an earthy aroma. There are also some light nutty notes. Black truffles are easier to heat and typically go a little better in sauces.

Italienische Präzisionswaage Trüffel von Di Bennardo

How do you store truffles?


To sum up, truffles are expensive for the following reasons:

  • Rare occurrence of soil with wet and exposed soil
  • Presence of certain trees such as hazel, oak, poplar, lime tree
  • Training of animals for truffle hunting such as dogs or pigs
  • Application for the global food market
  • Unique flavour, rarity and perishability of the product
  • High global demand in top gastronomy

What food and wine do white truffles go with?

Italienisches Trüffelsortiment von Di Bennardo

What distinguishes Truffles from Di Bennardo