Originally from Peru, the Patata della Sila was introduced by the Spanish, who first brought it to Galicia and then their domains in Italy. From here, it began to spread throughout all of Europe in the sixteenth century. Native to the Andes, the Patata della Sila is particularly suited to high altitudes and sloping fields.  The cultivation of the P...

The story of the very first person – perhaps an Egyptian circa 3000 B.C. – who had the idea to knead the very first dough made from ground grains (i.e. flour with water) will forever remain a mystery. Further doubt is cast upon who invented the leavening process for dough – the act of letting it rise and increase in volume for a softer, honeycombed...

One of the symbols of Italy, but especially of Calabria, is the Riace bronzes. Two bronze statues from the Hellenic era that were found in the Italian waters off Riace, depicting two Greek warriors or gods. Symbols of a disappeared civilization and a mastery belonging to 2500 years ago, the bronzes still hide dozens of mysteries related to their da...

A flowing red blouse, floral silk trousers and Hollywood diva sunglasses. This is how Mariuccia Ceraudo comes to greet me, bubbly and welcoming, at the foot of the long staircase overflowing with plants and flowers. A hug is all it takes to become an honorary family member. Up we go, stopping every few steps to collect a bunch of oregano here, some...

As the world suffers this terrible pandemic it’s important to stimulate our minds and still educate about Italian wines, especially supporting the Italian wine industry as the country continues to struggle, but at the same time remain strong to push forward.  I hope all my readers are staying well and please stay home.  It’s important for everyone...

One of the largest regions in Italy and full of riches, Calabria has a huge cultural heritage including castles, museums and works of art of great importance. Calabria is one of the largest regions in Italy and has a very large historical and artistic heritage. One of the beauties of Calabria fits into this panorama, the Aragonese castle of the isl...

JUST OFF THE COAST NEAR Praia a Mare, in the Southern Italian region of Calabria, lies the small Dino Island, which was once connected to the mainland until erosion ate away the land bridge. A sparse collection of buildings stands among the verdant foliage, hinting at one chapter of the island’s long human history. In the 1950s, Dino Island was sol...

Unknown to many, the statue of Christ the Redeemer of Maratea is the tallest sculpture in Italy. With a height of over 70 feet (21 meters), it’s one of the tallest statues of Jesus in the world. Before the statue, a memorial iron cross had stood atop the mountain since 1907. But it was often hit by lightning and subsequently damaged, so it was repl...

When asking a friend what time you should meet for lunch, she may say ‘a mezzogiorno’ – at midday, at noon, or at 12pm.  However, when Italians use the word ‘il Mezzogiorno’, they are not always be talking about lunchtime. Instead they could be referring to the southern area of Italy, including the regions Abruzzo, Molise, Campania, Puglia, Basilic...

The narrow Strait of Messina holds much historical importance and is what separates the coastal city of Reggio Calabria (Reggio) at the very end of Italy, from the picturesque island of Sicily. A coastal town that holds many historical secrets for you to unveil, there’s enough in Reggio to keep you busy for more than a day. Art, fabulous museums, a...