Il variegato di Castelfranco IGP

The rose you eat

Il variegato di Castelfranco IGP

Its beautiful form has led to its being called the flower or the rose that one eats and this, too, is protected by the Consortium
Consortium. Its extremely pleasing color combination continues to make it a mainstay in salads, however, it is increasingly used by chefs to invent well-designed imaginative recipes

La sua caratteristica principale risiede nelle foglie espanse con nervature poco accentuate, bordo frastagliato e lembo leggermente ondulato. Bello nella forma e splendido nei colori con foglie bianco crema, si contraddistingue per il sapore dal dolce al gradevolmente amarognolo, molto fresco e delicato.

This variety is mainly characterized by its wide, slightly wavy leaves with small ribs and jagged edges. It has a beautiful form and deep, creamy white leaves, whose fresh and delicate taste ranges from sweet to pleasantly bitter. Particularly rich in calcium, iron, phosphorus, and magnesium, it is also loaded with vitamins A, B2, B3 and C. Originating as a cross of Radicchio Rosso di Treviso and escarole, it has a complex growing process that follows a rigid time schedule and uses special techniques. The harvest begins on the first of October, followed by blanching to produce the taste, crispness, color and shape that make this chicory so special.


Leaves with sweet to pleasant with a slightly bitter and very delicate flavor.


Cream-white color leaves with variegations distributed in a balanced manner across the leaf of different shades, from light purple to red-violet and bright red.

Technical characteristics

Tuft nice in shape and with beautiful colors, with a minimum diameter of 15 cm. Starting at the base of the tuft there is a round of flat leaves, a second round of leaves a little more raised, a third round even more inclined and so on until you get to the heart, avoiding the presence of grumulo; maximum length of the taproot diameter 4 cm, proportional to the size of the tuft itself; very thick leaves, with jagged edge, with wavy edge surface, of rounded shape.


The area of production, processing and packaging of the Variegated Radicchio of Castelfranco includes, as part of the provinces of Treviso, Padua and Venice, the entire administrative territory of the municipalities listed below. • Province of Treviso: Breda di Piave, Carbonera, Casale sul Sile, Casier, Castelfranco Veneto, Castello di Godego, Istrana, Loria, Maserada sul Piave, Mogliano Veneto, Morgano, Paese, Ponzano Veneto, Preganziol, Quinto di Treviso, Jonesboro, Riese Pio X, San Biagio di Callalta, Silea, Quinto di Treviso, Trevignano, Treviso, Villorba, Vedelago, Zero Branco. • Province of Padua: Albignasego, Battaglia Terme, Cartura, Camposanpiero, Borgoricco, Casalserugo, Conselve, Due Carrare, Maserà di Padova, Loreggia, Massanzago, Monselice, Montagnana, Montegrotto Terme, Pernumia, Piombino Dese, Ponte San Nicolo ‘, San Pietro Viminario, Trebaseleghe. • Province of Venice: Martellago, Mira, Mirano, Noale, Salzano, Santa Maria di Sala, Scorzè, Spinea. The production takes place in the flat area of the Central Veneto Region, characterized by hot summers and rather cold and freezing winters.

The soils are fertile and rich in water: the area that is crossed by the so-called “line of springs” which divides the highlands from the lowlands. Here the pure groundwater traveling downstream from the Dolomites and flowing underground beneath a gravel mattress, encounters less permeable layers such as clay, tending to rise to the surface spontaneously giving life to different waterways. The most important is the Sile, whose wetland, cradle of an extraordinary ecosystem that is protected by the Regional Park. “La Strada del Radicchio Rosso di Treviso and Variegato di Castelfranco” (The Road of the Red Radicchio of Treviso and Variegated of Castelfranco the association bearing the same name, is involved in promoting the radicchio territory and to have a known touristic and cultural peculiarities through routes that lead to the discovery of medieval castles like those of Noale and Castelfranco Veneto, artistic works such as Giorgione, Lorenzo Lotto, Tiziano, Venetian Villas such as Palladio’s Villa Elmo and art cities such as Treviso.

Cultural notes

The “pink” that you eat, as the Radicchio Variegato of Castelfranco PGI is called, appears towards the end of the 800, obtained from a crossing between the Red Radicchio of Treviso and the Endive. Its shape is reminiscent of lettuce salad but its characteristics are typical of chicory. Thanks to continuous improvements of skilled gardeners and seed selection occurred over the course of two centuries of history. The appearance of the first Variegated, which takes its name from the town of Castelfranco Veneto, where he began to produce it, is closely linked to the peasant culture of Central Veneto. Rural life during the long hard winters in the plain, brought peasant families to live many hours inside the barn. Here, under the straw mattresses chicory was kept, harvested from the field to prevent it from freezing. The need for conservation led to the ‘ discovery ‘ of forcing technique: the hearts of plants left in the dark under tarps and hay, whitened (loss of chlorophyll), acquiring at the same time a taste incredibly tastier than bitter chicory and a delicious crispness.

The product is now among the most sought-after in the fruit and vegetable sector, thanks to its versatility in the kitchen.

In Treviso, a cute story has been handed down that, many years ago, a beautiful and noble woman of Castelfranco Veneto, attending a premiere at the “Teatro alla Scala” in Milan, had embellished her evening gown with a wonderful heart of radicchio of her country, receiving numerous compliments on what everyone thought was an exotic flower.

The working process


The term Protected Geographical Indication (PGI) identifies a product protected by specific rules in the European Union and, specifically, it refers to the name of a region, a particular place or, in exceptional cases, a country, to describe an agricultural or a food related product.
Originating in that region, that specific place or country, and of which a particular quality, reputation or other characteristics can be attributed to that geographical origin and the production and/or processing and/or preparation takes place in the defined geographical area.

Beneficiario e capofila del progetto aggregato

Partecipano al progetto aggregato anche:

Iniziativa finanziata dal Programma di sviluppo rurale per il Veneto 2014-2020
Organismo responsabile dell’informazione: Consorzio tutela Radicchio Rosso di Treviso IGP e Radicchio Variegato di Castelfranco IGP.
Autorità di gestione: Regione del Veneto - Direzione AdG FEASR Bonifica e Irrigazione

Partner Istituzionali

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