My sixth full day in Albania continued with more amazing Albanian slow food at Mrizi i Zanave, an incredible farm to table agrotourism resort in Lezhë, Albania. Come along with me as I continue my tour of this amazing resort!
My day at Mrizi i Zanave continued that afternoon. The resort consists of a beautiful, 9-room hotel as well as an expansive farm and factories where they produce their own wine, meat, cheese, and crops. I toured the farm and factories earlier in the morning, but now it was time to have my Albanian slow food lunch at Mrizi i Zanave!
The owner, Altin, took me back into the kitchen. I got to watch them make goose baked with onion and plums, as well as quail with pilaf. They also make lamb shish kebabs and even ice cream using coffee, blueberries, and honey! They brew coffee and then put it on the ice cream! There’s also a dessert that is made up of frozen blueberry juice on a blueberry tree stem!
You can dine in the forest area, the terrace with, or the open terrace that is wrapped with vines. I chose the one with the vines. It’s such a beautiful setting in the summer! It’s packed with people out there!
I started with a salad with ricotta cheese, tomatoes, basil, and oil. I had some crispy Albanian pite bread along with it. The cheese was beautiful and delicate and super soft. It was sweet! We also had some white shesh wine, which was dry and fruity.
Next, we had some pumpkin byrek, sun-dried tomatoes, olives, fermented green tomatoes, zucchini, eggplant, pepperoni, potatoes, cheese, peppers, and more. But I started with the fiori di zucca, which is a deep-fried zucchini flower that has been battered with flour, eggs, and beer and stuffed with ricotta cheese. We eat it all the time in Italy!
Next was a purple potato with cheese. It was soft and earthy, and I loved the crispy outer layer of skin on the potato. The cheese was like fondue! The tomatoes were so juicy and in-season. They know it’s tomato season when the crickets and grasshoppers start chirping in the garden!
The sun-dried tomatoes soak in oil for 5 days. They have so much flesh, which absorbs the oil. The zucchini and okra were amazing, too. Then, I tried some blueberry yufka, which is a pasta dish similar to Italian tagliatelle. It’s covered in a rich, purple sauce made from blueberries and fermented cow cream sauce!
It was creamy and al dente, and so unique and fresh! This Albanian food lunch at Mrizi i Zanave is seriously on another level!
Next was the sheep kebabs, which were fatty and juicy. The roasted goose with plum sauce contained lots of flesh. It’s gamy and amazing, but the star for me were the sheep kebabs. Next was a yogurt cake with wild berries. It had a cookie crust and tasted like a blueberry pie. I loved the crunchy, nutty crust. Then, I had the frozen blackberry juice on the stem, which was like a pure blackberry popsicle. It was so unique!
The blueberry ice cream and pine syrup was served inside a blackberry shell you break. The syrup is similar to honey. Then, I had some custard tart with berries, which was unreal! Then, we finished with coffee ice cream with roasted coffee beans. The ice cream was full of flavor and the beans were crunchy and phenomenal!
Then, we went to see how they make textiles and pottery in the village of Lezhë. Altin drove me 2 kilometers to a textile shop where a woman was weaving tablecloths. Her husband was making bread baskets using branches. She uses a contraption and weaves for 4-8 hours per day! The work it takes to find the branches, put them in the molds, and then weave more branches around them, is mind-blowing! They were so nice and friendly!
Then, we drove to another property to see some pottery be made. The man who owns the property, Vacilis, makes his own clay! He makes about 200 clay pots per day, as well as other shapes like cups and more. After he molds them, he puts them out in the sun to dry for a day. He makes piggy banks, vases, rakija pots, ashtrays, and more. A woman then paints them! He even made a huge shield with Skanderbeg on it!
Next, we went back to the hotel for dinner. My room was called The Horse. I loved the architecture and the way they had cut the stone away and put the glass windows in.
At dinner, I watched a violinist and pianist play music before we dug in. I started with some fresh juice on the same terrace as before. The vines were hung with lights and the sun was setting. We had a lot of the same appetizers as before, but we also had pork kebabs and baby goat. The pork was fantastic with the yogurt, and the baby goat flesh was so tender, it melted in my mouth. It was phenomenal! What an incredible way to end my Albanian food adventure at Mrizi i Zanave!
What a day! Huge thanks to my friends at Balkan Pearls Tour Operator and Rental Car Albania for making this incredible trip possible!
I hope you liked joining me for some epic Albanian slow food at Mrizi i Zanave! If you did, please give this video a thumbs up and leave a comment below. Also, please subscribe to my YouTube channel and click the notification bell so you don’t miss any of my travel/food adventures around the world!
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