Friday, May 1, 2015

APRIL 2015


04012015 Our final visit of the day, and it was only by chance, was to a small garden. That was where we met the horse. Like everything in the garden, he is the work of the Italian artist Domenico (Mimmo) Paladino. His garden – for a city built on top of empires, and full of shadows and spiritual shifts – disrupts thought.  It leaves you free to feel as your eyes wander over and around his long-armed figures, his up-turned umbrella of tiny faces, his symbols, his patterns, the careful tumble of old stone. The horse that followed me to Benevento | The Phraser
04022015 Naples has long been determined to maintain its reputation as the spiritual home of one of the world's favourite foods. Italy offers Neapolitan pizza for UNESCO heritage menu | Times LIVE
04032015 Expo 2015 is a crucial event for the world Naples City Council proposes an agenda for action that can enhance the leadership of the city: landscapes gastronomic famous since ancient times, the production chains of excellence known worldwide, local products that are the pillars of the "Mediterranean diet" proclaimed in 2010 Intangible Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO, pizza next world heritage, outstanding coffee, street food, air and joy. In Naples, food is culture, more than anywhere else. Napoli per Expo | slideshare
04042015 Naples is very well known for food. Even if a lot of the “business” is around the famous and inimitable pizza, street food is also a big part of the foodie culture and it’s not strange to find, both in the city centre such and in the suburbs, small places where to eat “fried stuff”. They’re called “friggitorie”, a sort of chip shops specialized in amazing local products capable of withstanding the trends of the moment and the passage of time. The best chip shops, or friggitorie, in Naples |
04052015 We soon discovered that everything in this place was absolutely huge. The palace itself is the biggest one built in Europe in the 18th century, and the rectangular park in front of it goes on for miles. I must thank the documentary for recommending the bike hire, as after 10 minutes of cycling we realised that we would have never in our wildest dreams made it to the other side by foot. And reaching the other end is unfortunately something you have to do if you want to take a look at the famous English gardens. Visit at the Royal palace of Caserta, Reggia di Caserta | Always Abroad
04062015 Naples has a typical dessert whose origins come from a surprising source. At a lunch in Lorraine, in France, during the first half of the 1700s, a Polish aristocrat tasted a sweet raised dough, soaked in sugar and Madeira wine, which he then named in honor of Ali Baba from his favorite story, "A Thousand and One Nights." French chefs, later introduced the Babà to Naples where it achieved world fame. The Babà is not Neapolitan. The crushing of food legends | Expo 2015 Milano
04072015 Small delicacies in the shape of shells, sfogliatellas are obtained by rolling a delicious filling of ricotta and almond paste into a rich number of dough layers. When baked, the layers become crisp and separate from each other, giving the sfogliatella its characteristic, ridged look. Icing sugar sprinkled on top completes these heavenly bites. Pintauro, a very small venue in the central Via Toledo, has been serving sfogliatellas – and sfogliatellas only – since 1785. Insider Guide to Napoli’s 10 Stunning Cultural Restaurants: The Best of Naples | The Culture Trip
04082015 Pastiera is a delicious and nutritious pie make of ricotta, boiled grain, eggs, lard, milk, sugar, spices and candied fruits cooked in a pastry shell in an appropriate pan called ‘il ruoto’. It is baked on Holy Thursday and Good Friday and is served on Easter Sunday, which allows enough time for the fragrances to mix, giving it its unique flavor. It has, however, a secret ingredient: aqua di fiori d’arancio or aroma of orange blossoms. But where does one find aroma of orange blossoms? That was what I was about to find out at Mrs. Viola’s pharmacy. There on the counter, next to the chapstick, was a basket full of little bottles with yellow labels stating: “ Farmacia Viola, S. Agata dei Goti (BN), Essenza per Colombe”. Spring’s Secret Agent | ItalianNotebook
04092015 The 2008 Terredora di Paolo Taurasi “Fatica Contadina” - the top-tier Aglianico of the tasting - has had two more years to age than the table wine, and the time shows in the color of the wine (garnet lightening to a pink-orange hue at the edges), and in the “vinous” aromas emanating from the glass. As wines age, the fresh fruits of a young wine tend to give way to earthier, more elemental scents and flavors. Here we begin to sense aromas of a forest floor, of mushrooms and fallen leaves, as well as the black cherry and iron that seem to be a hallmark of Terredora’s Aglianico. Finally, here we finally detect the ash of Campania’s volcanic soil, flavors of tobacco leaf and smoke, as well as Aglianico’s tell-tale chocolate and plums, in this case dark and ripe and beautifully aged. Aglianico’s rich history in southern Italy | The Taos News
04102015 Powerhouse, Cuomo… For this girl from New York, meeting a woman winemaker from the region of her immigrant grandfather, this was a special moment, layered with meanings. The surprise for me was Ravello. The name may ring a bell, as this is the dramatic, stunningly beautiful place where American writer and cultural figure, Gore Vidal, lived out his last years. On the breath-takingly beautiful Amalfi Coast, all the culture and history and beauty of the place rolls around your tongue in this equally beautiful wine. That Cuomo Touch! | Italian Grapevine
04112015 Sant'Agata de' Goti is a small, friendly and active town. When we were there, we were fortunate to see the car show of vintage cars and some Ferraris. There was also the town's Sunday market where I got some interesting finds. When you arrive to Sant'Agata de' Goti, you will go through a tree-lined road leading to a bridge that arrives to the main entrance of the town. On the left is the spectacular panorama of the natural fortifications of the town. Both daytime and nighttime, the effect is incredible. Inside the town itself is simpler, yet still beautiful. It's very well-kept and clean, in contrast to most towns in the southern part. A Weekend In Campania | Apron and Sneakers
04122015 “We wanted to open an authentic Neapolitan wood oven pizzeria, so we went to the source,” says Bourdages. They enrolled in a weeklong pizza boot camp run by the Naples-based Associazione Verace Pizza Napoletana (Real Neapolitan Pizza Association), a nonprofit dedicated to promoting Neapolitan pizza traditions. The five students, who ranged in age from 18 to 56, attended lectures on ingredients, visited a flour mill and a mozzarella producer, and spent 28 hours making pizza under the supervision of master pizzaiolos. By day, the apprentices learned how to make the Neapolitan pie’s characteristic thick outer crust. At night, they worked at historic pizzerias throughout the city. In the Kitchen with the World's Best Pizza Makers | Afar
04132015 The strong flavour is bittersweet. It oozes milk at each bite, is denser when you chew it than ordinary mozzarella, and has a smooth, brilliant porcelain-white (rather than yellowish) surface. It’s best eaten the day you buy it, as it doesn’t stay fresh for too long. There are three vital ingredients to proper mozzarella di bufala: a warm climate that produces great grass to graze on, free-ranging buffalo, and dairy skills handed down over generations. The foodie traveller on … the best mozzarella in the world | The Guardian
04142015 Herculaneum was engulfed by a torrent of mud flowing down from the slopes of the volcano, thus preserving it for centuries from the elements and illegal excavators. This definitely gives you a unique vision of life back then since some of the wooden elements, fabrics, mosaics and tile work remain as they were so many years ago. It was really something to see. Herculaneum |
04152015 Italy has chosen a culinary staple - classic Neapolitan pizza with tomato, basil and mozzarella commonly known as pizza margherita - as its number one candidate for protection under UNESCO's Intangible Cultural Heritage list, local media report. Imitations are limitless, but the real pizza Napoletana measures up to 35cm in diameter and has a slightly-elevated rim of no more than 2cm. The base should be cooked for between 60 and 90 seconds in a stone oven with an oak-wood fire. A bill tabled in the Italian parliament in 2004 specified which types of flour, yeast, salt and tomatoes - sourced from Naples - must be used in pizza Margherita.  It also determined that the dough has to be kneaded only by hand. Protect your sauce! Neapolitan pizza tipped to enter UNESCO 'menu' | RT
04162015  Located within the National Park of Cilento, the old town of Castellabate has been recognized as UNESCO World Heritage site. Narrow streets, picturesque corners, graceful arches and stunning palaces in grey stone characterize this quaint town and give way to breathtaking views of the Cilento coast. The fortress, built in 1123 to protect the population and naval traffic from Saracens invasions, still appears solid and imposing. Not far from it, the Basilica di Santa Maria de Giulia, with its gorgeous baroque facade, is also worth a visit. Don’t miss the opportunity to try local extra virgin olive oil and sweet black figs, along with fresh pasta with lamb ragù, a favorite of the region. Italy's most beautiful villages | L'Italo Americano
04172015 Once I finally admitted that the quality of my books (not to mention my reading habits and teaching ability) could bear improvement, whether they were published or not, I found that I had at least as much to learn as my unpublished classmates. And being a student made me feel younger! Yes, I’d taught many workshops myself, but I needed help with my current novel, and Sirenland instructors Anthony Doerr, Jim Shepard, and Dani Shapiro are literary superstars. It didn’t hurt that this improbable conference is held at Le Sirenuse, a five-star hotel in Positano, Italy – surely one of the most beautiful locations on the planet. On Being a Student Again | The Writer in the World
04182015 Take a boat ride around the island of Capri — you’ll get to see the entire island this way (at least from afar), and the beauty of it is absolutely breathtaking. You’ll also get to see the famous blue grottos up close and personal, without the crowds! 50 Things to Do in Europe Before You Die | Conde Nast Traveler
04192015 Nothing against Scialapopolo (which offers great food also) but what we like most about Tizzano’s is that the kiosk is exactly the same as it was when we were child and used to go to Capri for holidays, and used to get the lemon ice cream here.  Owned by the same family since then, you can feel the untouched mediterranean atmosphere with all those bunches of lemon fruits  hanging from the roof. Where to find the best lemon ice cream in Capri | The Hidden Capri
04202015 The Amalfi Coast, Capri, Sorrento and all of the towns in between are stunning, particularly in the summertime when the water is sparkling and everyone is dressed like they're on the cover of Vogue Italia, seaside edition. But how do you get to the Amalfi Coast at an affordable price? Well, the key is to do your research and look at your options. Here's the step-by-step guide I used to visit La Costiera Amalfitana. How to Visit the Amalfi Coast and Capri for Less | The Globe Getter
04212015 If you haven't been here already , the area of Massa Lubrense (Sorrento peninsula) is a botanist's delight from now until well into the summer. You don't have to be an expert hiker- there are several paths you can easily take. Go from Termini down towards Punta Campanella or from Termini up to Monte San Costanzo , enjoying not only the flowers but the views. The Sorrento Peninsula - A Botanist's Delight | Sorrento Amalfi Walk With Us
04222015 Italy’s Campania wine region is an easy day trip from the Amalfi Coast, and is known for its dedication to old world winemaking traditions and wines crafted from ancient wine varietals like aglianico, fiano and greco. When visiting Campania make sure to sip some Taurasi, a highly regarded DOCG-status red wine with notes of chocolate, leather and tar. While mainly a red wine region, there are a few white wines worth sampling in Campania, including fiano di Avellino and greco di Tufo. Around and About the Amalfi Coast, the Italian Way | Culture-ist
04232015 We were risking life, limb and divorce travelling around the Amalfi Coast in Italy by car. The narrow road, carved out of rock, twists around the craggy mountainsides high above the Mediterranean, before plunging down in corkscrew fashion until it reached a small village, then races through tunnels out into the sunshine and clambers up before plunging again. Terraced vineyards, houses and lemon groves hang suspended, and I wonder how they don't slide into the sea way below. Coasting through Italy |
04242015 Palazzo Penne, built in 1406 for Antonio Penne, the private secretary of King Ladislas of Anjou, is a rare example of the architecture of this period with its blend of Catalan (doorway) and Tuscan (façade bosses) elements. To gain some idea of the size of this Palazzo, just think of its stables (in the courtyard) that could accommodate 40 horses and 6 cars. The lily, the symbol of the royal dynasty, and the feather (the family emblem - penne means "feathers") are engraved all over the façade and entrance. Other carved symbols, revealing both the religiosity and the superstition of this eminent dignitary. Palazzo Penne, Naples | Mediterranean Meanderings
04252015 Few Italian cities cause as many arguments as Naples. Travelers either see it as chaotic and unwelcoming or else passionately believe that the city is one of Italy’s most vibrant and unique. Almost no travelers stand in the middle. Is the dividing line drawn between those looking for a quintessentially romantic Italian experience versus those seeking an adventure? Perhaps, but I believe that Naples offers something for every type of traveler. 20 Reasons to Fall in Love with Naples, Italy |
04262015 Naples’ peeling sepia walls tell you a lot about the city. They are devoted to passion and death. We will come to death later, as we all must. But the passion is everywhere – the canoodling couples, the flirtatious gazes, the lovelorn graffiti. In this heady atmosphere, I fell for Naples. No one would accuse the centro storico, the old historical centre, of being pretty, but she is darkly and ravishingly beautiful. She is also raw, passionate, secretive, generous, dilapidated, glorious, vibrant, and unabashedly corrupt and corrupting.  Naples: Passion and death in Italy's underrated gem | The Telegraph
04272015 We soon discovered that everything in this place was absolutely huge. The palace itself is the biggest one built in Europe in the 18th century, and the rectangular park in front of it goes on for miles. I must thank the documentary for recommending the bike hire, as after 10 minutes of cycling we realised that we would have never in our wildest dreams made it to the other side by foot. And reaching the other end is unfortunately something you have to do if you want to take a look at the famous English gardens. Visit at the Royal palace of Caserta, Reggia di Caserta | Always Abroad
04282015 Shooting of the Bond film, which will be Daniel Craig’s fourth turn as the British secret agent will take place outside Rome in in Campania, in the Royal Palace of Caserta, known as the Versailles of Italy. James Bond is back on the streets of Rome | Swide
04292015 If it wasn’t already obvious, Italians, and especially Neapolitans, take their pizza very seriously, and the AVPN is serious about protecting its reputation. The group has created a “certification” program that requires any pizza anywhere in the world calling itself Neapolitan to adhere to a strict set of criteria. This Ad Is Making Italian Pizza Makers Very Mad |
04302015 If McDonald’s executives didn’t understand that before last month, they understand it now. When the fast-food behemoth, which has seen its global profits tumble over the last year, aired a commercial in March implying that Italian children prefer burgers and fries to pizza, Italians reacted with outrage — particularly in Naples, the birthplace of the cheese-topped pie. McDonald’s told Italians that burgers beat pizza. That didn’t go over so well. | The Washington Post