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Pedalling along the Belpaese through vineyards and olive groves

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-17 May 2018

A bike ride is an escape from sadness” James E. Starrs

Sometimes fortuitous and exceptional encounters happen that inspire us to reflect on the meaning of life or simply open our mind – even if for a moment. This is the story of Jasper Khudha Buksh, a 31-year-old Canadian boy who decided to momentarily press “STOP” to his everyday life and devote himself to a project that will last 3 years: visiting wine cellars and oil mills around Italy, Spain and France, all on a bicycle to convey a message of environmental sustainability and love for nature, but also to overcome a challenge with himself.

Let’s take a step back: Jasper, of Pakistani origins, in everyday life is a person that we in Italy would define as a businessman, but also a self-made man, who had the famous opportunity to make a change in his life, thanks to a strong passion and an innate curiosity for wine and food, succeeding in transforming it into a profession, as well as a great personal elegance that has allowed him to be also a testimonial of a well-known Canadian tailoring brand, Gianpaolo Mazzotta, who creates for Jasper tailor made garments in perfect Italian style.  Thanks to a system that rewards meritocracy, Jasper has become General Manager of one of Toronto’s most popular restaurants, the Buca, named among the 100 best restaurants in Canada, famous and appreciated for the excellent proposal of Italian cuisine and that for the love of the Belpaese has even started to produce and serve its own cured meats to convey the values ​​of craftsmanship and homemade that the whole world envies us. These values, in fact – are at the origin of ​​Jasper’s journey: experience and understand the “Italian way” in order to return to Canada and share with the customers and the staff of the restaurant what makes our products unique.

PEDALLING ALONG THE BELPAESE THROUGH VINEYARDS AND OLIVE GROVES

Thus, the journey of this young enthusiast, not only of wines but also of oils and typical products, starts with a Cannondale bike ordered from Canada and collected in Jesolo (Ve).

Thus, the journey of this young enthusiast, not only of wines but also of oils and typical products, starts with a Cannondale bike ordered from Canada and collected in Jesolo (Ve). Jasper only booked the first visits to the cellars of Friuli Venezia Giulia and Veneto, also asking for hospitality to fully immerse himself as much as possible in the lives of winemakers, waking up with dawns on the vineyards and shooting videos with a small drone of the visited estates. The rest of the journey will be pure adventure, with the only help of a friend who from London books his subsequent visits. Because Jasper during the day has to pedal, only in the evening he rests and connects all his devices and starts telling his stories with videos on YouTube, photos on Instagram and posts on Facebook: travelling today is also shared on social networks and Jasper is in its own way an influencer on the web. In his small travel bags he carries more technology than clothes, to document its stops and the fantastic tasting experiences that will take him from Veneto to Pantelleria, through an itinerary that starting from Trentino Alto Adige will cross Liguria, Piemonte, Emilia Romagna, Tuscany and down to visit the oil mills of Puglia and Campania. On average, Jasper will need to travel around 60/70 kilometres a day on a bike to follow an ideal schedule, with peaks of even over 100 km to travel between regions.

The idea of taking a break from the so-called daily life and returning enriched by such an experience makes us reflect on the value we give to things and how much good a journey of discovery can do to the soul, especially if done with such an environmentally friendly and positive spirit, that makes us want to follow Jasper’s example.

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