|• THE MARCHE TRAVEL GUIDE|
|- A first overview|
|- City of art and culture|
|- Rural tourism and touring|
|- The Marche and the sea|
|- Wine and Food in the Marche|
|- Marche - uncontaminated nature|
|- Marche - Sport and leisure|
|- Thermal Baths and Wellness|
|- Romantic Marche|
|- The Artisan Marche|
|- The Marche region in blue|
|- Marche Fortresses and castles|
|- MARCHE for young people|
|- Marche for families|
|- The Marche and wellness|
|- The Green Marches|
|- The Archaeological Marche|
|- Medieval festivals / historical reenactments in the Marche|
The Marche represents a unique reality in the food and wine sector and can be considered as the synthesis of Italian delicacies grouped on one land only, Italy in one region. In fact, precisely in virtue of the varied and articulate configuration of the territory, dominated by the mountains and overlooking the sea, different culinary traditions can be found as a result of the happy combination between nature, traditions and culture. The Marche boasts a tradition of food and wine made with simple and genuine ingredients, kind tastes where strong and decisive tasting dishes, mainly with meat, are alternated with dishes of shellfish, blue fish and fish salad
Truffle. The Marche is one of the few Italian regions to be able to boast an excellent production of all of the main types of truffles. The white truffle, the most precious, can be found above all in St. Angelo in Vado and Acqualagna, in the province of Pesaro and Urbino. The black truffle is spread out above all in Acqualagna, Cagli, Acquasanta Terme, Roccafluvione, Comunanza, Montefortino, Camerino and Visso. Mushrooms are very common and widespread throughout the mountains. There are many edible species: Porcini, St. Giorgio mushrooms, Caesar's Mushroom, morels, field mushrooms, chanterelle, grey knights, parasols and cloud funnels.
Cold Cuts. The history of cold cuts is intimately connected with the metayage origins of the population which used almost all parts of the pig for nourishment purposes, without wasting anything. From here originates the two most typical local cold cuts, the salami of Fabriano, much loved by Garibaldi, finds its origins in the better cuts of meat, that of the shoulder and the thigh, which are cut and salted, then larded and stuffed into casings within the gut of the pig itself; and the “Ciauscolo” , common overall in Macerata a PGI (Protected Geographic Indication), the lard is minced and mixed together with the meat creating a homogeneous dough that can be spread over the bread.
Other products are “coppa di testa” “mazzafegato”, “fegatelli” and "salsiccia matta". The wholesomeness of the meat from pigs raised in the Marche without a doubt come from their diet and the slaughtering method. Quality products are “lonza”, “lonzino”, “capocollo”, “pancetta arrotolata” and “porchetta”. Ham, one of top quality elements of a pig, is produced within the entire territory. “Prosciutto from Carpegna”(Carpegna Ham DOP) is one of the best known and requested ham both in Italy and abroad, also due to the European POD (DOP) recognition in 1996.
Oil. Thanks to the 7,200 hectare of vineyards, The Marche is a particularly suitable region to for the production of oil with great organoleptic properties. It is characterized by a fruity, balanced taste with bitter and spicy notes. Among the native varieties worthy of mention are Coroncina, Piantone di Falerone, Piantone di Mogliano, Sargano di Fermo, Orbetana, Mignola, Carboncella, Raggia, Raggiola and Cartoceto oil, which is identified as POD (DOP) (Protected Denomination of Origin). The quality of the oil is inextricably linked to the olive: very valuable is the tender Ascoli olive, which is unanimously considered to be the best green olive, all over the world it is known not only in brine, but also fried and stuffed “all‟ascolana” (Ascoli-style).
Cheeses. It is a land rich in pastures where cattle are fed in a natural way, producing rich and healthy milk. Therefore, there are many different types of cheese made from cow, sheep, goat and mixed milk, produced in the various areas of The Marche, such as Casècc, Caprino, Slattato, Raviggiolo, Quark, Ricotta and Cacio in the shape of a lemon. The various pecorino cheeses are very peculiar, characteristic of all mountain areas, where the curd is flavoured with marjoram, thyme, shoots of blackberry, clove, nutmeg, pepper, oil, egg yolk and grated pecorino. In the northern region is also the cheese stored in oak barrels, where it is left for three months and wrapped in walnut leaves or arranged in layers along with aromatic or pomace herbs. The casciotta from Urbino, a favourite of Michelangelo is also famous and its origins date back to 1500. It is made with sheep or cow's milk, with the addition of yeasts and curd. The shapes are immersed into brine and left for about a month in special temperature and humidity controlled preservation rooms. It is the only cheese from The Marche that boasts the protected denomination of origin (POD).
Wine and spirits. The hills in The Marche are the ideal location for the cultivation of vineyards and the production of sweet and aromatic grapes, ideal to obtain excellent quality wines. The gamut of wines produced in the region is, in fact, quite vast: 15 DOC (RDO) wines (Bianchello del Metauro, Colli Maceratesi, Colli Pesaresi, Esino, Falerio, I Terreni di San Severino, Lacrima di Morro d’Alba, Pergola, Rosso Conero, Rosso Piceno, Serrapetrona, Terre di Offida, Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesi and Verdicchio di Matelica), 5 DOCG (GDO) wines (Conero, Castelli di Jesi Verdicchio Riserva, Offida, Verdicchio di Matelica Riserva, Vernaccia di Serrapetrona,) and 1 Marche IGT (Typical Geographical Indication). There are numerous celebrations and festivals dedicated to the celebration of wine as well as itineraries throughout the territory in order to enjoy art, tradition and culture. It is well worth visiting the Regional Wine Store of the Marche in Jesi and Offida.
The distillation in The Marche region has ancient origins, thanks to the monks who, in the fifteenth century, devoted themselves with passion and talent to create reinvigorating drinks. Anise flavoured liqueurs are the most famous: Mistrà and Anisette come from the practice of flavouring alcohol, extracted from grape residues, with its essences. In Fano, Moretta Fanese has a peculiar history: originally it was a mixture of brandy, anise and rum invented at a local port bar in order to lace the coffee of seamen before departing for the sea or after their return from fishing, it had to be strong and reinvigorating. “Vin cotto”, “sapa”, “vin santo” “visner” or “vino di visciole” (aromatized drink with wine and sour cherries) derive from rural inland traditions.
Sweets. The autenticity of the Marche cuisine is also well expressed with its sweets, which are distinguished for the use of the raw materials from the territory and the simplicity of the preparation. Usually they contain very little sugar given that the same was once a precious commodity to be used sparingly and honey was used to sweeten the ingredients. They are nearly all of rural origin and were made on occasion of Carnival, religious celebrations or related to the various seasons. “Castagnole, Biscotti al vino, Marocchini, Sciughetti or polenta di mosto, Bostrengo, Salame di fichi, Frustingo, Ciambellone, Pizza sbattuta, Cicerchiata, Ravioli di marroni, Funghetti di Offida, Calcioni or Piconi, Frappe, croccante con le mandorle o con le noci, cavallucci di Cingoli, Cicerchiata etc…”
Fish. The best known regional fish based is "brodetto" (fish soup), for which the recipe can vary from one area to the next: “Anconetana”, “Fanese”, “San Benedettese” and that from “Porto Recanati”. Also famous are: sea devils in oil, garlic and rosemary; cuttlefish and peas; stockfish from Ancona; eggplants with anchovies; marinated anchovies; anchovy omelette; mackerel in tomato sauce.
The Marche is also famous for: honey, fruit and vegetables and biological products.
The Roads of wine. The flavours of the wine, the charm of the hills and the treasures of the area, in the footsteps of the wines that are the most representative of the territory: the Road to Rosso Conero, the Road to Verdicchio di Matelica, the Road to Rosso Piceno (www.turismo.marche.it)
The Cities of oil. The culture and the history of the olive tree and quality olive oil (www.cittadellolio.it)
The Cities of honey. An ancient tradition of high quality in order to discover over 30 different types of honey (www.cittadelmiele.it)
The Cities of wine. History, culture, landscape, local and artisan products related to wine (www.terredelvino.net)
The Regional Wine Shops. A must for understanding wine heritage.
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