A perfect day in Italy does not necessarily mean visiting churches, monuments or museums. The joy of being in Italy is in the simple pleasures that even doing everyday errands brings. That is not to say that I am not thrown off by the words that can strike fear in your heart ‘chiuso per pranzo’ (closed for lunch). Meaning if you are not able to accomplish all your errands before the inevitable shut down for pranzo at one o’clock, that you are out of luck until the shops reopen at four thirty. Allora.
As I tell everyone who visits,
‘Italy has its own rhythm’
we simply need to adjust to its unhurried tempo.
This particular day we stopped by Voglie di Bosco. VOGLIE DI BOSCO MORETTI a family-owned Umbrian company that since 1982 has been marketing and processing truffles, mushrooms, tartuffi products, fruit and vegetables .
We were greeted by the owner, Doriana and her son, Walter. The first question was not ‘posso aiutarti?‘ (can I help you) but ‘posso offrirti un caffe?’ (can I offer you a coffee).
We willingly accepted and in no time were having a conversation albeit with our limited command of Italian about truffles, how to cook with wild fennel spice and decoupage. Seems Doriana likes decoupage, so I told her of my favorite decoupage artist, John Derian.
As our guests would be arriving the next day we stopped at Mondo Pizza to see Franco and place an order for one of his ‘divino’ meals. As soon as we arrive Franco offers us an assagio (taste) of some of his savory Easter bread. Then we catch up on news of his family and establish a time to pick up our cena (dinner) the next day. Unfortunately, the only way to reach Franco, and many of the small purveyors of fine food in the Ficulle/Fabro area is by telephone. No email or website.
As we were in need of some formaggio (cheese) to offer our guests we stopped by Alimentiari Gastronomia Salumeria on Via Vittorio Emanuele in Fabro. Again, the fun begins as we practice our Italian and are instructed by the owner about pecorino (cheese from goats) as opposed to cheese from cows We are of course, invited to have a taste and learned that the Caciottina cheese which has the intrinsic flavor of milk from Norcia, has been aged in a grotto (underground cave), and made only in small batches for quick consumption.
When was the last time you were told of the provenance of the cheese you were about to purchase in your local supermarket????
Getting to know the people that supply, grow and and care about the foods you love, who take the time to speak about their valued products and artisanal methods of production elevates those products and that experience and makes every day in Italy “the perfect day!!!”