Flavours for the body and soul

Thanks foremost to the former Croatian capital of Varaždin and its cuisine, which was strongly influenced by Austro-Hungarian and Viennese traditions, the region has always been a place of great food and hospitality. 

Experiencing the region's cuisine means encountering a wealth and diversity of dishes that arose both from the simplicity and ingenuity of village housewives by their kitchen hearths and from the exceptional culinary skill of chefs in the kitchens of the wealthy and the nobility. The feasts of Varaždin's guilds were especially notorious, true gourmet events that lasted for days with menus of more than thirty courses. The charm of Varaždin's cuisine has always been in its preparation, which preserves flavours and the high nutritional value of ingredients grown in village gardens and fields. The locals have always known how to enjoy flavours of good food and drink that soothe the body and relax the soul. They also recommend the same to their guests. At fifteen select restaurants bearing the Flavours of the Varaždin Region standard, you can experience this wide palette of gourmet riches. The scents and flavours of dishes and beverages made with locally-grown ingredients will offer you a true gourmet dining experience with a traditional signature.

The guardians of tradition

Varaždin County has thirteen protected food products: Varaždin sour cabbage, vidovečki gibanik buckwheat and cheese cake, Zagorje turkey, varaždinski klipić milk roll, trnovečka makovnjača poppy seed cake, Bednja turkey, Zagorje turkey from the Varaždin region, kučanski koščičjak buckwheat cake, Varaždin pumpkin seed oil, Varaždin medenjaci honey biscuits, homemade natural honey brandy, vabučin pumpkin seed spread, and ludbreški rozetlin decorative flowers. These are the guardians of tradition in producing local ingredients and the art of the local residents in preparing and processing them. The best-known among them are Varaždin sour cabbage and pumpkin seed oil, the main ingredient in local salads, especially bean salad, string bean salad, potato salad, and cabbage salad.

A kingdom of health Varaždin pumpkin seed oil has been protected for more than ten years as a valuable, highly nutritious product, a natural remedy for human health. In cooperation with oil producers, an original bottle with a unique label has been prepared in which numerous producers sell this oil. This is a great local traditional souvenir, a gift that nutritionists claim is a true kingdom of health.

Wine from the hills

The rolling hills that rise gently above the Drava lowlands have always been a place where fruit and grapes are grown. Nearly every household has its own vineyard and produces its own wine. Hundreds of small vineyards with little wine cellars still grace the surrounding area, and the tradition of viticulture and wine-making continues through the growing of high-quality varieties of grape, the development of larger producers and modern wineries. The region also boasts a few wine routes (Ludbreg Wine Route, Varaždinske Toplice Wine Route, Ivanec Wine Route, etc.) which allow visitors to sample and enjoy the great local wines, which have received awards for their quality at prestigious international wine exhibitions.  

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