francesca bezzone

The pleasure of writing, Italian style: the history of Aurora fountain pens

In a world where the younger generations are less and less acquainted with pen and paper, and more and more in love with keyboards, talking about the...

Fernet Branca, the Italian liquor that duped Prohibition

In Italy, Fernet Branca has always been an institution, especially among the older generation: both my grandmothers had a penchant for it and for...

History of Italian Cuisine... in a nutshell

We all love it and eat it, and we may even be somehow knowledgeable about how to prepare some of its most representative dishes, but what do we...
It is in Fabriano, in the central Italian province of Ancona, that the history of paper in Europe begins, in the late 13th century.  Photo by FranzGustincich

The secular history of Fabriano’s precious paper

The first memories I have of Fabriano paper are of the A5 notebooks we used in elementary school: each page was heavier and thicker than average,...
The dismantlement of the Emilian gang is just the beginning of a series of interventions to safeguard Parmigiano Reggiano producers and their products

Italian crime’s new frontier: luxury food theft

There is no peace to Italy’s most famous cheese: Parmigiano Reggiano. If counterfeit varieties of it were not enough to alarm producers, in the past...

Italian … makes Italians

“Fatta l’Italia, bisogna fare gli Italiani,” famously said Massimo D’Azeglio shortly after the unification of Italy. And he was right: in those...
Simple, perfect, unchanged almost one hundred years later: the original, aristocratic Negroni remains the most loved

Give me a Negroni! The history of one of Italy's most iconic drinks

I have lived for fifteen years outside of Italy and had to endure the oh-so-harsh reality my beloved adoptive country knew next to nothing about...

An Italian family, Ancient Rome style

Family: the essence of our being, the root of our ideals and the place we go back to when everything fails us. It does not really matter if it is...

The Ides of March and Julius Caesar’s death mystery

Not many may think of it, but the 15th of March, the Ides of March, to say it with the Romans, marks the millenary anniversary of one of history’s...

Is Milan the real capital of Italy?

Let me put things straight: there’s no place like Rome. Cradle of culture and art, archetype of beauty, favored destination for history buffs and...

Weekly in Italian

Recent Issues