Rural House Montizel in Zavrsje, Istria

Yesterday we went to Rural House Montizel (itl. Monticello) in Zavrsje with some friends. I don’t know how familiar you can be with the term Rural House.

Agroturizam Montizel Zavrsje Croatia | Croatia Restaurant Guide
Agroturizam Montizel Zavrsje Croatia | Croatia Restaurant Guide

In Istria, somebody can register as Rural House (cro. Agroturizam), if among other requirements, the place meets following specific requirements: tourist place where people actually do agriculture, and beside accommodation, tourist can taste local dishes prepared exclusively with owner’s own homegrown products.

So if you drink a wine in any Rural House, it is wine made by the owner from his own grapes. Or if you eat a chicken, it should be a chicken grown by the owner. Or if you – ok, you get the pattern?

Rural House Montizel Interior in Zavrsje
Montizel Interior

Zavrsje is beautiful hilltop village above Mirna Valley, not far from Groznjan, in inland Istria.  Just 1 km off Zavrsje, on the Montizel hill, you will find Rural House Montizel (itl. Monticello).

The view from the Montizel is amazing, it is surrounded by the vineyards, with views over hilltop villages Motovun and Zavrsje. Rural House Montizel is the only property in the area, and it has a beautiful terrace for dining out on warmer days.

Rural House Montizel Terrace
Montizel Terrace

Terrace can accommodate up to 40 people, and inside the capacity is another 40 persons. The Rural House is run by Pincin family.

There is no menu available, but the meals are suggested by the owner. They have classical Istrian dishes like dry cured Istrian ham, homemade sausages, Istrian soup, homemade pasta and gnocchi with homegrown chicken, beef, venison.

Pasta With Chicken Stew
Pasta With Chicken Stew

Other specialties like wild asparagus, chanterelles, or other wild mushrooms are on the menu seasonally.

They serve their own olive oil (very good), wine, and selection of homemade liqueurs. You can also buy them there to take home. Besides, they have homemade jams on sale there.

Typical Istrian Soup - Manestra
Manestra, Istrian Soup

My experience at Agroturizam Montizel

I loved the place the moment we entered. It seemed like we traveled back in time. The place reminded me of ventas I ate at, many years ago, in Pyrenees.

The place is very welcoming, with its rustic interior, red and white checkered tablecloths, stone walls, wooden beams, wooden tables some made of old sewing machines and benches (yes, benches are in place of chairs).

A large stone fireplace and wood burning stove add even more ambiance to the place. Walls are decorated with old wooden wagon wheels and pieces of old wooden plow, and lamps are made of straw.

Rural House Montizel
Rural House Montizel

The food was very decent. Actually homemade pasta with chicken stew, a typical Istrian dish, was one of the best I have eaten so far. The sauce was thick and stuck to pasta well, making it really juicy, while pasta was perfectly cooked al dente.

Manestra, a typical Istrian soup, was yummy. At Rural House Montizel, you feel like the time has stopped. The waitress is laid back and not in rush. Something that at other places could be quite annoying, here, at Rural House Montizel was perfectly normal.

Plate of Cold Cuts
Plate of Cold Cuts

The only downside for Rural House Montizel is their toilet. Toilet is attached to the restaurant but from outside. On the cold winter day, one should get dress to go to the toilet.

This is a small downside. But at 90 kn (approx. 12 €) per person for three course meal with bottle of water and a coffee, Rural House Montizel will be seeing us again. I am already planning my next visit.

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4 thoughts on “Rural House Montizel in Zavrsje, Istria”

  1. Hi Marion and Jonathan,
    thank you so much for the encouragement. I am happy to share some tips. Let me know places you like, so I can check them out for myself and report back on it. If you haven’t been to Stari podrum near Momjan, go. It is really home cooking. I would eat there everyday if I could. Please, once that you are back from your visits to Istria, get back and share your tips. Have a wonderful weekend. Should be sunny according to the weather forecast. Also, it is a season of wild asparagus. It is a great way to spend a day out in the forests picking them. Or just order them at any restaurant you visit (of course, if you like them).

  2. Hi Frank

    We have enjoyed reading your blog. We have only just discovered itWe have been visiting Istria for around 10 years years now, at first as we have friends in Rjeika & now as we bought a little house a few miles inland from Porec.

    We get over as often as we can but not often enough. We have our familiar places & restaurants to go back to but your blog has opened up lots more possibilities! Thank you. We usually have our 3 children with us 9, 7 & 5 years but we are coming over for a long weekend by ourselves, arriving this Saturday am. We will try to discover at least one or two new places, restaurants using your tips.

    Until now, we have just stumbled on places but would love to discover more of Istria.

    Just going to read more…

    Thanks again.
    Marion & Jonathan

  3. Hi Helen,
    thanks again to stop by. And to keep reading my posts. When you decide to visit Istria again, I will be happy to show you around.
    See You!

  4. Hi

    It looks wonderful. The food, building and surroundings are to die for. We must return to Istria – and spend more time there. The last time we drove there, I refused to get in the car and leave the campsite because we had driven hundreds of miles to get there.
    Congratulations again on your English. It is exceptional for a second language – with very few mistakes indeed.

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