Capitán Pastene is the name for a town rich in history founded by a handful of Italian immigrants who arrived in the mountainous zone of Nahuelbuta 108 years ago....
and thanks to a continuance of its culinary traditions rooted in Italy, has transformed this small town of only 2,000 residents in a true “Little Italy” in the middle of the Araucanía Region of Chile.
You can go from one end of town to the other in a matter of minutes. What really matters, of course, are the restaurant tables, which are the main reasons for coming to this village that lies 650 kilometers to the south of the capital Santiago. Not only is there an abundance of Italian fare, but you can even visit artisan prosciutto factories. Montecorone is one of those factories that have been in continuous operation since the early 20th century, an emporium whose classic style the owners have preserved since its founding. It’s a true museum of ham if there ever was one.
The area also boasted a viticulture heritage brought by the same colonists but which was lost over time. Chilean wine experts and viticulture enthusiasts have managed to restore part of this area’s former wine tradition by establishing vineyards in an area dominated by forests and wheat fields, planting Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and Riesling in search of a character-infused wine, expanding the frontiers of production in the process.