Words and music, an inspirational land

Words and music, an inspirational land

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When beauty becomes poetry

The profound soul of a city or a region is often revealed in the words of the poets and writers who have lived there and written works that remain vivid through time, imprinting themselves in our memory, or in the music of those who, inspired by the atmosphere of these lands, have composed equally immortal symphonies.

The ideal starting point for an itinerary sketched out with a pen is Casa Deledda in Cervia where Grazia Deledda, who was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1926, stayed for so many summers that she became an honorary citizen. In the heart of Sant’Alberto, a hamlet of Ravenna, writer Olindo Guerrini’s home is now a cultural centre which also houses two libraries following the legacy of the writer’s family.

Moving to the Ortazzo farm in Alfonsine, birthplace of Vincenzo Monti, a leading Italian neo-classical poet, you can admire his cherished furnishings and memorabilia. In Bagnacavallo on the other hand, you can visit the Giardino dei Semplici, known also as the “Garden of Aphorisms” which, set among flowers and herbs, displays wrought iron benches engraved with the aphorisms of the journalist and writer Leo Longanesi who was born here in 1905. In Casola Valsenio, surrounded by a lush park with thirty thousand plants, stands the Cardello, once home to the writer Alfredo Oriani who wrote all his works here, and now a museum.

No less fascinating are the places that gave birth to or hosted some of Italy’s most talented musicians. The Gioacchino Rossini Home and Museum in Lugo tells the story of the life and symphonies of the composer from Pesaro who lived in Lugo at the beginning of the 19th century while in Bagnara di Romagna the Pietro Mascagni Historical Museum houses relics of this famous musician who was romantically linked to the chorister Anna Lolli, originally from the area. Fusignano remembers its former citizen Arcangelo Corelli, an important figure in instrumental Baroque, with a bust displayed on the facade of the Pio Suffragio Church. Faenza’s theatre, on the other hand, is named after Angelo Masini, one of the greatest Italian tenors of the nineteenth century, who was born in Romagna.

Photo credits

1. The Rossini Home and Museum in Lugo, arch. Unione dei Comuni della Bassa Romagna
2. The Monti Home in Alfonsine, arch. Unione dei Comuni della Bassa Romagna
3. The Garden of Aphorisms in Bagnacavallo, arch. Unione dei Comuni della Bassa Romagna
4. The Masini Theatre in Faenza, Andrea Scardova, arch. Unione della Romagna Faentina
5. The Pietro Mascagni Historical Museum in Bagnara di Romagna, arch. Unione dei Comuni della Bassa Romagna

Food – Romagna’s fruit

The fruit grown in Romagna is renowned and appreciated the world over for its extraordinary quality. The leading ladies of this land are the Romagna Peaches and Nectarines, which in 1998 were the first in Europe to be awarded the Protected Geographic Indication mark. The entire province of Ravenna has land suited to these two excellences while Massa Lombarda is home to Pesca Buco incavato, a historic white peach that derives its name from the deep seam that runs down one side. This variety was one of the most widely grown in the region in the 1930s.

The PGI pear from Emilia-Romagna is also highly prized. At the beginning of the twentieth century, this region established itself as the cradle of European production for this fruit that originated in China and was brought to Italy by the Romans. There are eight protected varieties, each with distinctive characteristics and all highly appreciated by chefs and restaurateurs.

An intense aroma, a sweet flavour and a crisp consistency characterize the Romagna strawberry, whose cultivation has greatly increased since the Second World War. The same period saw the spread of the Romagna persimmon, the name of the fruit belonging to the Kaki type cultivar. It is eaten fresh or used in desserts.

Wine – Romagna Trebbiano DOC

Also produced in sparkling and semi-sparkling variants, Romagna Trebbiano is one of the most common white wines served in Romagna’s eating venues and taverns or drunk at home. It is named after the productive and resistant grape from which it is produced and is the most widely grown vine in the region, especially in the province of Ravenna. Its presence here was documented in the 14th century by the Bolognese agronomist Pier de’ Crescenzi. Since 1973, this wine has had the Controlled Designation of Origin (DOC) mark.

Romagna Trebbiano is straw yellow and characterized by a salty dry flavour, which releases freshness and fragrance in the mouth. It should be served at 7-8°C and is a versatile accompaniment to many dishes but pairs especially well with fish or seafood salads and light first courses. It can also be enjoyed with aperitifs served with piadina, cured meats and squacquerone or other fresh cheeses.

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