Even though I have been living in Italy for a few years already (can’t believe it…time is flying!) and have been to my fair share of wine tastings, food festivals, cultural events, farmers markets, and all that good stuff that Italy is known for, I still get excited to see what’s being organized every month in the wide world of Italian food and wine (and not only!). In fact, I would probably be happiest driving up and down the boot discovering new places, little and unknown, sipping and tasting, learning about typical products and the local history and traditions that make them unique.
Below are a few of the events that I came across that seem interesting, and that you might find interesting as well. Since I live in Bologna, I of course look for events within or around the city, or for events that can be easily reached.
Suggestions and additions are welcomed.
Food & Wine Events & Markets:
March 1, 8, 15, 22 & 29 – “Wine of the day” tasting paired with regional gastronomic delicacies led by a sommelier. International varieties and local grape varieties will be tasted, such as Gutturnio, Centesimino, Burson, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Sangiovese, Malvasia, Pignoletto, Ortrugo. Tasting of 3 wines 6 euro + small plate 2 euro. Location: Dozza | Regional wine bar of Emilia Romagna 0542 367700
March 7, 14, 21, 28 – “Vignaioli in Enoteca” The winemaker is in! A great way to get to know local winemakers and varieties, and to taste local specialties. Open and free to the public. From 2:30pm to 6pm. Location: Dozza | Regional wine bar of Emilia Romagna 0542 367700
Here I mention Dozza twice and for good reason; I haven’t yet made it there but it is on my list of places to see. Dozza is a medieval village to the southeast of Bologna and has been named one of Italy’s “Most Beautiful Villages”. Dozza is located on a hilltop and offers spectacular views of the surrounding countryside. This Romagna village is really a unique place as murals painted by internationally-known artists adorn the ancient facades of the historic center. The regional win bar is also a must see. Housed in the cellar of the Sforza Castle in the center of Dozza, the Enoteca displays over 1000 wine labels to choose from with sommeliers offering guided tastings and pairings.
Since living in Italy, I don’t really shop for fruits and vegetables at supermarkets anymore. Instead I opt for buying fresh produce at the central Mercato delle Erbe located just a few steps away from Piazza Maggiore on Via Ugo Bassi.
There are also quite a few farmers markets to choose from around the city and you can find one almost everyday of the week in a different, yet centrally, located area.
Here’s the run down:
March 5, 12, 19, 26 Organic local food market every Thursday from 5pm to 8:30pm in via Fioravanti 24. Location: Navile district(Bologna) |Campi Aperti 347 4083255
March 4, 11, 18, 25 From producer to consumer: fruit, vegetables, dairy products, bread, rice, cured meats, honey, wine, flowers. Every Wednesday from 3:30pm to 7pm, Via Segantini. Location: Reno district (Bologna) |Produttori Agricoli 329 4511263
March 6, 13, 20, 27 Fresh produce market (Mercato di Campagna Amica) every Friday from 8:30am to 12:30pm, Piazza XX Settembre (near Porta Galliera). Location: Porto district (Bologna) | Coldiretti Bologna 051 6388648
March 7, 14, 21, 28 Fresh produce market (Mercato di Campagna Amica) every Saturday from 8am to 12:30pm, Via Cristoforo Colombo (in the business park). Location: Navile district (Bologna) | Coldiretti Bologna 051 6388648
March 3, 10, 17, 24, 31 Local farmer’s market with fresh and seasonal product (Mercato di Campagna Amica) every Tuesday from 4pm to 8pm, Piazzetta Don Gavinelli, in front of Chiesa del Sacro Cuore. Location: Navile district (Bologna) | Coldiretti Bologna 051 6388648
March 3, 10, 17, 24, 31 Fresh produce market (Mercato di Campagna Amica) every Tuesday from 4pm to 8pm, Via Po, 10 (parking lot Gardencap). Location: Savena district (Bologna) | Coldiretti Bologna 051 6388648
March 4, 11, 18, 25 Fresh produce market (Mercato di Campagna Amica) every Wednesday from 2:30pm to 6:30pm, Via del Gomito 30 in the square behind Villa Due Torri. Location: Navile distrivt (Bologna) | Coldiretti Bologna 051 6388648
*This next one is especially good!
Every Saturday Local and seasonal fruit and vegetables, cheese, cured meats without preservatives, wines produced only from local varieties, artisanal beer, flowers, fresh fish and meat, honey, eggs, bread made from mother yeast, Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, olive oil from Imola. 9am to 2pm in Piazza Pasolini (in the courtyard of Lumiere Cinema). Tables available for tastings. Location: Porto district (Bologna) | Slow Food 328 1396004
March 6 & 7 – Romagna Wine Festival – Cesena, a small city located to east of Bologna quite close to the Adriatic coast, hosts the third annual Romagna Wine Festival. The festival features, of course, food and wine tastings, open markets, and the on-going battle of Tuscan Sangiovese vs Romagna Sangiovese. This would make for a great little day trip this weekend! More information can be found on the Emilia Romagna tourism website. Location: Cesena historic center and around town
Art & Culture:
Until May 17, 2015 – Da Cimabue a Morandi, Felsina Pittrice (Works from Cimabue to Morandi) – I feel as though Bologna tends to be frequently overshadowed by the artistic giant and its just-over-the-mountains neighbor, Florence. This exhibit, however, brings “The Fat, The Red, The Learned” (Bologna’s other name) to the artistic forefront. Displaying art work spanning over seven centuries and featuring over 180 works from both private and public collections, this exhibit is a tribute to the most important moments in Bologna’s art history. For more information, visit Bologna’s museum website. Location: Bologna | Palazzo Fava, Palazzo delle Esposizioni, Via Manzoni 2
Until April 19, 2015 – Il viaggio oltre la vita. Gli Etruschi e l’aldilà tra capolavori e realtà virtuale. (Voyage to the Afterlife. The Etruscans and The Beyond through Masterpieces and Virtual Reality) – The Etruscans were an ancient people that populated much of what is today central Italy (and a bit north and south as well), and whose history is still quite unknown. This exhibit delves into their world by bringing to light, through rich imagery, objects, ceramics, and sculptures, their thoughts and beliefs on the afterlife. Especially interesting is the installation Sarcophagus of the Spouses, (there are only two in the world, one in the National Etruscan Museum in Rome and one in the Louvre) which virtually reconstructs the tomb and illustrates the Etruscan’s story using hologram technology. For more information, visit Bologna’s museum website. Location: Bologna | Palazzo Pepoli, Museo della Storia di Bologna
March 7 – 9 – TASTE Florence – Passionate foodies and Florence lovers rejoice, TASTE is again for its 10th year and continues to be bigger and better. This fair celebrates all that is good and tasty in world of Italian food, featuring hundreds of producers from across Italy displaying their specialities. There are over 150 events in and around Florence, called FuoridiTaste, organized by restaurants, bistrots, cooking schools, hotels, and boutiques, that complement the fair and offer special tastings, menus, and classes. Visit the site for more info. Location: Florence | Stazione Leopolda, and in and around Florence