Baci di Alassio (literally kisses from Alassio) are one of the most representative sweets of the West Italian Riviera.
Made up with hazelnut and chocolate, they were invented and patented by the famous pastry chef Rinaldo Balzola, owner of the homonymous Pasticceria Balzola in Alassio, in 1919.
Mr. Balzola created these tiny sweets specifically to leave a gastronomic souvenir to tourists visiting Alassio.
In fact, in the early 1900s, Alassio began to establish itself as a tourist destination attracting visitors not only from neighboring regions, but also from England and Germany. At the outdoor tables of the Pasticceria Balzola, the international jet set took coffee and pastries and it was not difficult to meet characters such as Maksim Gorky or Gabriele D’Annunzio, and other poets, writers and movie stars.
D’Annunzio himself (one of the most famous “decadent” Italian poet) defined Baci di Alassio the “the sweets of kindness”.
From the twenties onwards, the popularity of this sweet based on hazelnuts and cocoa powder has grown so much that the recipe has obtained numerous awards, such as the certification of product De.co. (Municipality Denomination of Origin) becoming the sweet ambassador of Alassio in the world.
Today all the bakeries of Alassio (and neighboring villages) produce them and jealously guard their recipe.
Here you find mine.
The ingredients are very few, the recipe easy. Just one winning tip: choose hazelnuts, cocoa and dark chocolate of excellent quality!