Every year around this time, mid October, I get vaguely annoyed. First of all it gets cold and wet for the first time after months of wonderful weather. It’s still beautiful all around, but one needs to get used to at least a sweater.
Then, like every October in the last 10 years, Eurochocolate comes to Perugia and so the traffic and a million chocolate wrappers.
Eurochocolate is a large chocolate festival, sponsored by the big chocolate brands. For our our small provincial capital this means more than 100 thousand visitors within a few days. The locals lock themselves up for 2 week-ends. There is not point in getting squashed when one can buy (most of) the same stuff in the supermarket.
If you want to get any close to the stands, it’s better to visit on a weekday.
However, if you – unlike myself – love a huge crowd, then do go in the weekend to see the making of the chocolate sculptures in Perugia’s main street Corso Vannucci. Large blocks of chocolate are carved by energetic artists and all the trimmings are given out for free to the onlookers (video).
Altrocioccolato, held in other Umbrians towns is a cozy, fair-trade and green alternative to the monster kermesse. There’s lots of organic stuff, hand knitted socks, good music and free theatre for the kids. It’s even possible to find parking space. You can still binge on choclate, but in a very friendly atmosphere.
As for myself, if I need special chocolate, I can get it year around in the many small shops that sell excellent chocolate which are now present in almost any town of touristic interest. I like to get suggestions and a bite to taste in peace, no queuing up required.
Near Assisi you can find good chocolate at:*Terra Umbra. Via Patrono d’Italia 10, Santa Maria degli Angeli, Assisi **Pasta fresca e non solo, 43, Viale Michelangelo Palazzo di Assisi