Making South Tyrolean Speck like in grandfather’s time

On the Kaltenbrunnhof farmstead in Tisana near Castelrotto, the knowledge of how to make good South Tyrolean speck has been passed on from generation to generation.

It was the granddad who, after the war, began to make speck for other people. At that time each farm still had a “smoke kitchen” and each farmer raised its own pigs. Anything that could not immediately be consumed on the farm had to be cured and smoked to ensure it would keep. Since the owner of the Kaltenbrunnhof farm had a particularly good reputation as a speck maker, the craftsmen and innkeepers would bring him their meat and ham and after some months they would receive the “Kaminwurzen” (smoked sausages) and speck in return, obviously against payment for the effort been made.

Start of the speck sale

When “Grandpa” Anton took over over the farm as a young boy in the 1960s, he set up a small speck production. Unlike his father, he now bought the meat of selected pigs himself and sold sausages and bacon in his own farm shop.

Even today the selected lean pork legs are lovingly covered with a special spice mixture by the farmer Dieter according to his great-grandfather recipe. In the curing room at the Kaltenbrunnhof in Castelrotto  the ham is stored for several weeks and it is repeatedly turned over by hand so that all the spices can be absorbed.

The subsequent mild cold smoking with selected woods ensures the typical taste. The Trocker Speck then has another six months to mature in the fresh mountain air. This gives our ham speciality its unique taste, beautiful colour and shelf life.