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20 September 2018

Professional Sommelier Associations in Italy: Which Ones Are They?

Described as a wine expert or wine steward in the dictionary, a sommelier takes on a challenging education and role in the world of wines. What started in France in the 16th century where the modern culture of wine was born, from the management of the cellars of the noble estates evolved to something much more fascinating in the 21st century. The figure of a sommelier now has metamorphosed to a function that has a wider scope in the enogastronomic scene wherein organoleptic analysis of the wine is foremost to evaluate the characteristics and quality, as well matching correctly food and wine together. It can be pursued as a profession but it can also remain as a valuable baggage of knowledge to those who are passionate about the subject of wines.

13 September 2018

Notable Dining at Dionisio Ristorante in Benevento (Campania), Italy

Dionisio Ristorante and Dionisio Bistrot are quite well-known in the city of Benevento for their food and wine. The restaurant is located at a side street from the main artery of the city while the bistrot, the more casual dining, is located right on the main pedestrian road of Benevento. Both locations are just a few meters apart from each other.

12 September 2018

Dining on the South Tyrolean Wine Route at Bad Turmbach Restaurant in Eppan, Italy

Just the drive towards Landgasthof Restaurant Bad Turmbach through the vineyards and old alpine houses and barns of Eppan is already worth the trip. With an elevation of 500 meters above sea level, the restaurant is completely immersed in the beautiful Etsch Valley of the South Tyrolean Wine Route. It is dotted by ancient castles, ruins, apple orchards and vineyards on rolling hills. And there's more to come when you arrive in the warm days of spring and summer when the private garden across the restaurant and inn is open. A very spacious garden surrounded by rows of vineyards and tables positioned under apple trees. The setting is unbeatable!

11 September 2018

Cocktails at Ostuni's Ancient Alley: Riccardo Caffè in Puglia, Italy

The cobblestone alleys of Ostuni, the ancient White City of Puglia, reverberate with life in summer as the restaurants and bars take over the little corners of the narrow streets with tables, chairs and bean bags. With the backdrop of white walls and cobblestones, the colors spilled all over the town create a unique and beautiful contrast of modern life in an ancient city.

When Friends Dream About Wine: Montevetrano in Salerno (Campania), Italy

The story of Montevetrano is an inspiration to everyone who dreams and who are keen to make it happen. The motivational quotation to stay positive, work hard and make it happen works well to push us in executing what we dream about. It was in 1983 in a wine bar in Rome when a group of winelover friends who frequently meet had this idea to make their own wine. At the center of it was Silvia Imparato, a professional photographer, Renzo Cotarella and his brother Riccardo Cotarella, both enologists.

10 September 2018

Luxury Hotel in the Roero Hills: Castello di Guarene in Piedmont, Italy

What a wealthy nobleman built in the eighteenth century from an existing Medieval castle for seven centuries still stands with its original splendor on top of the hills of Roero while it dominates the town of Guarene. The castle went through a redesigning and rebuilding by Count Carlo Giacinto Roero di Guarene who was an important aristocratic figure in Piedmont and also an amateur architect.

08 September 2018

The Wines of Italian FIVI Producers Featured at Eataly

September is the month traditionally tied to the harvests in the vineyards and for this, Eataly, like all years, dedicates it to the world of wine focusing on the spread of the quality wine culture. This year, the guests of honor are the Federazione Italiana Vignaioli Independenti (FIVI) or the Italian Federation of Independent Winegrowers whose labels will be showcased in the enoteche or wine shops of Eataly in Italy and Europe.

06 September 2018

Deep Roots of Puglia at Ristorante Pashà in Conversano (Puglia), Italy

The story of Pashà is about a mother's courage and natural maternal instinct to take care of things when difficulties arise in the family. When the restaurant got a call from their current chef who couldn't come to work because of a medical surgery, the kitchen was going to be left unmanned. That's the time when Maria Cicorella grabbed the apron and commanded the kitchen even without professional culinary education. But it's not the first time that she took over a desperate situation like this because at a very young age of eight when her mother was in the hospital, she took care of her family's meal. In a baking dish, she put together the lamb that she found in the fridge, potatoes in the pantry and condiments then took the it to the local baker and asked them to bake it in their oven.

04 September 2018

A Bar, A Lounge & A Terrace: Achilli al D.O.M. Restaurant in Rome, Italy

A bar, a lounge and a terrace. In 2017, Achilli al D.O.M. took over the kitchens of D.O.M. Hotel, a luxury boutique hotel along the historical center of Rome in Via Giulia. Achilli al D.O.M. is affiliated with the historical and Michelin starred Enoteca Achilli al Parlamento of the Achilli family at Via dei Prefetti in Rome.

24 August 2018

The Alpine Wines of Weingut Haderburg in Salorno (South Tyrol), Italy

In Italy, the Alpine wines come from some areas of Alto Adige (South Tyrol) and Valle d'Aosta at higher altitudes. Weingut Haderburg of the Ochsenreiter family specializes in sparkling wines. It has two plots of vineyards, the Hausmannhof which is located in Salorno is the main vineyard of the estate where the cellar and the main production line is. Obermairlhof instead is located in Chiusa in the Isarco Valley where the white wine varieties are known to produce astonishing results with a good interplay of freshness and minerality. With a total of 8.4 hectares, the annual production is around 50,000 bottles. Furthermore, the estate practices biodynamic agriculture which means that they use only substances procured from nature and that they breed animals for their natural ability to enhance the fertility of soil. Weingut Haderburg was founded in 1977 by Alois Ochsenreinter, who also functions as the enologist and agronomist. In the succeeding years, his children Erika and Hannes took over the activities under his tutelage along with his wife Christine.

23 August 2018

The Mono Varietals of Weinhof Kobler in Magrè (South Tyrol), Italy

The South Tyrolean Wine Route, one of the oldest wine routes in Italy, begins in Nalles, goes through Bolzano, Oltradige, Bassa Atesina then to the border of South Tyrol, Salorno. With the interplay of the vineyards, monuments, and the villages, the route exudes a magnificent scenery. The majority of the wine production in Alto Adige (South Tyrol) is cultivated in this area wherein grape varieties like Merlot, Lagrein, Pinot Grigio and Chardonnay find their habitat quite well. For a total surface of 206 hectares, white grape varieties dominate the number by 164 hectares as opposed to the 41 hectares allocated for the red varieties. The village of Magrè is along this wine route and it is the area where many excellent wines are produced.

The Young Star Chef of Kirchsteiger Restaurant in Foiana (South Tyrol), Italy

Chef Christian Pircher, proprietor of Kirchsteiger Hotel and Restaurant in the town of Foiana/Völlan in South Tyrol has received a multitude of awards for his culinary skills, making him the most promising youngest chef in South Tyrol. A native of Foiana, a small town above Lana, he keeps his family's tradition of the hotel and restaurant activities. Having a father who is a chef and growing up in the practice of foraging for wild herbs for cooking, his passion has evidently naturally sprouted from his genes.

22 August 2018

A Michelin Star in the Vineyards: Ristorante Marennà in Sorbo Serpico (Campania), Italy

In the middle rolling hills of the Campanian Apennines lies Feudi di San Gregorio Estate, a futuristic rectangular structure created in 2004 by renowned Japanese architect Hikaru Mori. It stands prominently amidst its perfectly combed vineyards. It is the largest wine producer in the region and internationally well-known. To boost the enhancement of the perfect unity of their wines with stellar food, inside the estate lies Marennà, a Michelin starred restaurant.

21 August 2018

Fiumicino (Rome), Italy: 13 Gastronomic Addresses To Go To

Arriving and leaving Rome by plane, you pass through the town of Fiumicino where Leonardo da Vinci International Airport is located. Just a few kilometers from the main flying hub is the town proper where the principal road sits right next to the canal that comes from the Tiber River then leads to the Tyrrhenian Sea. It's not just a place where you pass through to go to the capital because it holds an interesting aspect to make you stay put and enjoy the place too. For its proximity to the capital, about 30 kilometers, it is a seaside town along the Tyrrhenian Coast where Romans head to for seafood dishes. Fiumicino is a town where restaurants abound, hundreds of them lined up one after the other. Seafood is mainly served, as well as pizzas, meat, gelato, and practically everything that you can imagine eating. In other words, you won't leave the town hungry as there are so many places to choose from. But the big question is, where do you eat well? Having lived in this town for almost two decades and being particularly conscious about the quality of the ingredients used, here are the ones where you can go to wherein the degree of excellence is the protagonist in the kitchens. From very economical options of pizza al taglio (Roman pizza by weight), a genuine trattoria to Michelin-starred restaurants, and finally to an award-winning cup of gelato, here are 13 addresses to take note of.

18 August 2018

The 275 Years of Oste Scuro - Finsterwirt Restaurant in Brixen (South Tyrol), Italy

Oste Scuro / Finsterwirt Restaurant, a celebrated restaurant in Brixen / Bressanone for its excellent kitchen, has an interesting history to tell. The restaurant is housed in a two-storey building that was built in the 13th century making it as one of the oldest structures in the town of Brixen. Historically, it served as the residence of the religious canons of the cathedral.

16 August 2018

Lakeside Dining at Seehotel Ambach Ristorante in Kaltern (South Tyrol), Italy

Othmar Barth is known for his groundbreaking work for the development of modern architecture in South Tyrol and Seehotel Ambach is one of his architectural masterpieces. Set on the northeastern end of Caldaro (Kaltern) Lake, Seehotel Ambach continues to receive guests in a beautiful part of South Tyrol from the time it was built in 1973 by Anna Ambach. In 2014, it received Bolzano's award of Historic Hotel of the Year. Today, Anna's nephew, Klaus Maran along with his wife Melanie, continue the legacy of the renowned hotel with the comforts of the 21st century in an unchanged ambience of the modern architecture of Barth that overlooks the Caldaro Lake.

14 August 2018

Drink Pink at Bererosa 2018 in Rome, Italy

For the seventh year in a row, the 2018 edition of Bererosa arrived in Rome dressing the capital in - PINK! Cucina & Vini, one of Italy's leading gastronomy magazines organized the event at Palazzo Brancaccio in Rome. The palace was built in 1880 in the heart of the Eternal City by Prince Salvatore Brancaccio, exponent of one of the most ancient and illustrious families of the Neapolitan patriarch. Wine producers from southern Italy all the way up to the north showcased their rosè wines made with a diversity of indigenous and international grape varieties.

13 August 2018

Officina del Mare Ristorante in Fiumicino (Rome), Italy

With just about 30 kilometers of distance from the capital, everyone heads to Fiumicino when seafood cravings arrive. It's the nearest coastal town along the Tyrrhenian Sea and it has hundreds of seafood restaurants to choose from. At the town's long road along the beach, Lungomare della Salute, a dense row of restaurants open their doors to seafood lovers. We are in one of the coast's most prominent fishing towns, what else can be in their kitchens?

11 August 2018

Ristorante Gourmet Alpes of Hotel Bad Schörgau in Sarntal (South Tyrol), Italy

We are in South Tyrol, one of Italy's autonomous regions that is immersed in the best of what nature can give. Located in the northernmost part of Italy and bordered by Austria, it is flanked on all sides by the Dolomite mountains, never-ending green, breathtaking views, unspoilt nature, and beautiful lakes. But the list doesn't end there because South Tyrol also has the most number of Michelin-starred restaurants in Italy. Given its distinctive cultural influences and the abundance of natural resources, the cuisine is prominently alpine in foundation. A beauty in the dishes that only this region can convey through the hands of its chefs.

08 August 2018

L'Oro nel Piatto: Trattoria da Neno in Rome, Italy

Dubbed as L'Oro nel Piatto (Gold on the Plate), the special night at Trattoria da Neno turned out quite a success albeit the intense summer heat that hit the capital. Serenaded by the enchanting voice of Sara Jane Ceccarelli, a four-course dinner by Chef Luca Baldacci, and craft beer from Birrificio Maiella, the night, sponsored by Talco, a food and art promoting fashion brand, reached a full house.

07 August 2018

Molo 21 Ristorante in Santa Marinella (Rome), Italy

With a widened perspective in the kitchen due to his Canadian origin, Chef Kevin Murphy presents the Italian cuisine with a bigger spark of interesting innovative possibilities. Molo 21 is a restaurant born in 2012 from the union of Kevin and his wife Eleonora Fiorini who both specialize in gastronomy. Kevin studied  the Italian cuisine passionately for years in the 14 years that he has been living in Italy, attending numerous professional courses, one of them with Chef Antonio Sciullo. At the same time, he is also a sommelier because he believes that a good dish has to be appreciated with a glass of good wine alongside it. Eleonora on the other hand, studied Restaurant Management in Gambero Rosso and she takes care of the needs of their clients at the dining area of the restaurant.

06 August 2018

Centro Bistrot & Cocktail Bar in Rome, Italy

An air of novelty hits Centro Bistrot in Via Cavour. Two years after its opening, the four partners and friends of Centro Bistrot, Manuel Hassan, Amos Halfon, Daniel Camerini and Giulio Glam, give the direction to one of their most admired chefs, Salvatore Testagrossa. A chef who had a vast professional experience in different kitchens in France, England and his native Italy. After finishing his working stints at some of the capital's well-known restaurants, Baccano, La Zanzara and Vos, he made Centro his new home.

05 August 2018

Molto Ristorante in Rome, Italy

Molto Ristorante, elegant, modern and spacious in its residence of 320 square meters, has been in the neighborhood of Parioli since 2006. It has a distinguished setting of wood, iron and slate but with a ensconced cozy and tranquil space right in the middle of the city. There is an open wine cellar of important wine labels that has grown notably over the decade.

04 August 2018

Peppo al Cosimato Ristorante in Rome, Italy

When you are looking for a simple kitchen concept of fish and pizza, head straight to Peppo al Cosimato in Trastevere where Chef Emiliano Squiglia gives life to straightforward dishes using lesser known and affordable varieties of fish while Pizzamaker Francesco del Bene prepares classic and gourmet Neapolitan pizzas. Add the food to the interesting wine list and friendly service and you have one of the Roman restaurants to refer to when you want genuinely good Italian food.

01 August 2018

Grekos Ristorante in Rome, Italy

Casual Greek Food arrived in Rome through the doors of Grekos Ristorante in Rome. The restaurant that opened in July 2018 is located in Via dei Gracchi in the Prati area of the capital. Proprietors Mauro De Felice, Anna Paola Rinaldi and Fratzis Kakias, who originated from the island of Kos in Greece fifteen years ago, decided to open Grekos as their second Greek restaurant in the capital after Ippokrates in Via Piave. 

15 July 2018

Castello Monte Vibiano Vecchio Winery in Marsciano (Umbria), Italy

As you maneuver the electric cart from the winery to the higher part of the town where you pass the town's church, go through a dusty country road with lots of green then veering to the left, a beautiful corridor of perfectly trimmed hedgerow and old olive trees and finally, to Vigna Lorenzo, the important vineyard of Castello Monte Vibiano Vecchio Winery dating back from 217 B.C. bordered by ancient Roman walls and with a breathtaking backdrop of the Umbrian landscape, you wonder: can't a winery visit be more phenomenal than this?

14 July 2018

Secondo Tradizione Ristorante in Rome, Italy

A reformatted Secondo Tradizione opened its doors again last April 2018, revealing a new atmosphere and a completely different menu by co-proprietors Chef Alessandro Cecere and Sommelier Andrea Pistoia. With both behind the kitchen and the cellar, along with Sous Chef Davide Bernardi, Fabiola Pintori in the dining area, plus the cheese and salumi of a historical high quality delicatessen for food experts, La Tradizione of Stefano Lobino and Francesco Praticò which is handled by Raffaele Piras, the whole squad gives a notable dining experience in the Prati area of Rome that echoes the philosophy of Secondo Tradizione.

12 July 2018

Monte 2 Torri Gourmet Ristorante in Genzano (Rome), Italy

Castelli Romani has always been a refuge to Romans for centuries. With just 30 kilometers from Rome, the towns at the feet of Colli Albani (Alban Hills), the beautiful rolling verdant hills lined with vineyards and orchards, volcanic lakes, and specialized local enogastronomy charm not only the Romans but also people from different parts of the world.

05 July 2018

Marinella, Pizza su Misura in Rome, Italy

When the pizza dough is made with a mixture of selected flours, has risen for 96 hours and retains a high level of hydration, as supervised and consulted by one of Rome's most important master pizza chef, Angelo Iezzi, the finished product comes out highly digestible and light. Rome can be dotted with pizzerias but it's not easy to find one that serves pizzas with good digestibility. Remember that a good pizza doesn't depend only on what are on top of it. What makes it good is when you still feel light after eating it and when you digest it fast. The secret is always on the rising of the dough and the quality of the ingredients of the dough and toppings. After eating a good number of slices of pizza at Marinella, I can assure you that the pizzeria knows what quality and digestibility mean.

04 July 2018

Dieci Amanti in Cucina: A Novel by Eva Forte

Dieci Amanti in Cucina which means Ten Lovers in the Kitchen is the third novel of Eva Forte which was recently released in Rome. The text is in Italian and it is available both in pocketbook form or in Kindle.

Dieci Amanti in Cucina is a mystery novel angled towards the culinary world where ten recipes are shared in the story that intertwines together with the life of the protagonist, Camille. It is about the mystery of the disappearance of a well-known Austrian chef that leads a private investigator named Reiter in a small village in Provence. Here the characters revolve around a vegetable garden composed of ten plates, ready to host a different type of crop, each of which is represented by a recipe.

01 July 2018

Hand Made Bistrot in Fregene (Rome), Italy

When a dream becomes a reality. When a chef meets a pastry chef. When experience evolves into a brick-solid foundation. When creativity branches out to a thousand possibilities. When gastronomic passion pushes to open a door to a kitchen. These are things that best describe a restaurant that aspires to be one of the best in the seaside town of Fregene.

22 June 2018

Trattoria Pennestri in Rome, Italy

In a span of only one year, Italian-Danish Chef Tommaso Pennestri and Argentinian Sommelier Valeria Payero received an immense satisfaction in the restaurant that they opened in Rome last year. Trattoria Pennestri, located in the area of Ostiense, is a restaurant that continues to revive the true concept of the identity of a genuine Roman trattoria where you can eat and drink well and above all, feel relaxed in its warm and cozy Roman ambience. 

21 June 2018

Omina Romana Estate in Velletri (Rome), Italy

When Anton Börner first set foot on the land that was to become the future Omina Romana Estate, the thought of buying the land and plant grapes for wine production was immediate. So in 2004, the 80-hectare hilly terrain on the Alban hills in the town of Velletri has an elevation of about 250 meters went through a thorough process of viticulture. Long periods of studying and experimenting in the volcanic soil with predominantly of clayey with some sandy areas of the land led to the cultivation of grapes in more than 60 hectares of its area. With proper knowledge, right techniques, intense work and modern technology, Omina Romana was able to obtain excellent wines over the years.

20 June 2018

Casa Vinicola Fratelli Casetta in Alba (Piedmont), Italy

When Ernesto Casetta speaks about his wines, you can easily get lost in his stories and the wealth of information that he provides. He has a lifetime of experiences where ups and downs in viticulture formed him into what he and his winery is now. He comes from generations of family with roots in Roero since 1725 where viticulture has always been a main activity. With an average annual production of 300,000 bottles, the first vintages in the early 1960s, then the very first export that went to Japan then succeeded by the US, and a wide range of wines, Ernesto has a lot to be look back on and see what an accomplishment the Casa Vinicola Fratelli Casetta has attained.

18 June 2018

Gelato Jam Session at Food Bunker Culinary School in Nepi, Italy

Gelato invades the premises of Food Bunker! Seven Italian gelato makers from Rome and Central Italy converged for the occasion of the Gelato Jam Session, a gelato event at Food Bunker Culinary School last 11 June 2018 to promote the partnership of the school with Carpigiani, a world leader in the production of professional ice cream equipment, and Agrimontana, a company that has over 40 years of experience in fruit processing. The seven gelato makers showcased one flavor each using Agrimontana products and Carpigiana ice cream equipment.