Coffee culture is an essential part of Italian life, akin to an art-form and nigh on a religion. There’s a myriad of coffees on the menu from Espresso to Caffé Shakerato – then there’s the two, three or four different ways they’re served. Coffee is a serious past-time in Italy and comes with its own etiquettes and customs. Let’s get to grips with the ground rules…
Aperitivo time in Italy and a recipe for Aperol Spritz, the perfect summer’s drink that I like to call ‘sunshine in a glass’.
How to get from PIsa Centrale Station to the Leaning Tower of Pisa (map included), what to see en-route and where to get the best gelato…
The Leaning Tower of Pisa is the campanile, or free-standing bell tower, of the cathedral of the Italian city of Pisa, famous worldwide for its tipsy tilt to one side.
Catania’s cafes and bars are the perfect place to indulge in a cup of coffee and a cannolo when the sightseeing begins to take its toll. There are some gems when it comes to Catania’s cafes; chock full of character, charm and full of dazzling displays of the best Sicilian patisserie.
The Port city of Catania, Sicily’s second largest city, is situated on the east coast of the island, just south of where Italy puts the boot in. Mount Etna looms on the horizon, swathed in haze, huffing a near constant stream of smoke and an occasional dribble of red-hot lava.
The cool, calm, quiet of the Consoli kitchen is in complete contrast to the clamour of Catania’s colourful market which we’d just explored as part of our Sicilian Gastronomic Adventure. The next part of the tour was to immerse ourselves into the flavours, cooking customs and rich history of Sicilian cuisine.
We could hear the Pescheria, Catania’s open-air fish market, before we could see it. The sound of fishmongers shouting their best price to undercut the neighbouring stalls filled the air along with laughter, banter and the smell of fresh fish and salt water. Catania’s Pescheria is an explosion of sights, sounds and smells – bustling and chaotic it’s alive with atmosphere which instantly awakens all the senses – and the appetite!
Tuscan cuisine is food for the soul; intense fresh flavours from a few choice ingredients which have been freshly picked or pulled from the earth. Unpretentious, seasonal and prepared with passion.