In Paladin, next to Buzet, the famous truffle family Karlić opened the first truffle museum, dedicated to everything that makes truffles in Istria, but also much more widely. Through details from history, tools, and interesting facts about truffles, every visitor leaves here richer for a new experience and a different experience of truffles.
We can rightly say that this museum is “a small museum with a lot of souls”. The Truffle Museum is a new project of the Karlić family, responsible for numerous innovative tourism products related to truffles, such as truffle hunting. After the new tasting room opened a few years ago, now it’s the museum’s turn. It contains everything that makes up truffle farming in Istria, but also additionally refined it with a wider picture of truffles in the world, with the desire that the visitor can get to know this interesting and special mushroom in a simple, unburdened and fun way, one of the oldest foods that we still use today.
– For many years this was my wish and dream. We bought an older building near our tasting room, and there I wanted to show in one place how truffle-making developed in Istria, to present the little people who started the story with truffles when they didn’t even know what it was and also to somehow thank to grandfather Ivan Rašpolić for being persistent in searching for and promoting truffles. Today, we are part of the story that places Istria in one of the world’s most important truffle regions – Ivan Karlić told us.
Notes from history
In the museum, you can see what the root of the tree looks like around which the truffles will develop and grow, find out a few details from the history when truffles were attributed divine properties, and feel why the truffle is so popular, which writers dedicated their works to the truffle and which historical personalities served as an aphrodisiac. A special section is devoted to the development of Istrian truffles, the first official discovery of the white truffle in 1929, which confirmed that Istria is a truffle region, as well as the types and specificities of truffles.
Interestingly, each of the four most common types of truffles that thrive in Istria is presented separately, and modern technologies have made it possible for visitors to try their specific smells and see how they differ. The largest truffle of 1.31 kilograms found in the Buzeta Forest in 1999 by Giancarlo Žigante was also presented, and a part of the museum is also dedicated to all those local truffle hunters who contributed to the development of this beautiful story by going hunting every day.
For years, Ivan Karlić collected historical objects from his family, but also other truffle growers, so part of the museum is dedicated to tools such as shovels for digging up truffles, which in Istria are called the, records of collected and sold truffles, old scales, baskets, licenses for hunting for truffles, calculators and other everyday items that were once used during hunting and redemption.