When I came to Bologna, I had no idea that I was the first Blogville guest – when I say the first, I mean the first ever! As a result, I was met by the organizers and welcomed to the house with a lot of enthusiasm and some delicious treats. Actually, the house is filled with delicious products from the region, but I was fortunate to get a detailed introduction to not only the house and the organizers (Nicholas, Andrea, Emmanuelle, and Giovani) but also to some of the delicious products and treats.
The house is a beautiful apartment (3000 Euro per month!!!) set in the center of Bologna, easy walking to all the major museums and furnished with comfortable chic furniture (of course, because it’s Italy). Each of us if given a remote wifi router, a Blogville card which grants us access to all the major museums, a free trip or two, and much more (including info, friends and suggestions and help).
Salame Felino – named for a small town in the green Baganza Valley where herds of pigs were raised in the past – this was a very sweet and very ‘wet’ (25-30% pork fat + white wine) salami. Perhaps too wet for me but the CEO of loved it. Interestingly, the word salami comes from the Latin root for salt ‘als’ which became ‘sal’ – the art of Sami making goes back quite a long while with the first bas-relief associated with the astrological sign aquarius going back to the 12th century. This particular salami is raw, not cooked – which I don’t exactly know how to feel about.
More enjoyable was the Piadina de Romagna (pita?)which comes from the Sillaro River region. To put it in American terms, this is a delicious flour tortilla. The thickness varies, but in general – it was flour tortillas heated up – which I quite like.
Finally and most enjoyable was Pignoletto Wine which comes from the south and west hills of Bologna. Monte San Pietro is the place where the grapes are said to be the best. Consorzio Vini Colli Bolognesi which was founded in 1971 (just like I was) oversees and promotes the wines.
Pignoletto is a very distinctive grape which began with Pliny the Elder who said in the 1st century “Pino Leto, not sweet enough to be good” but actually, he was wrong – it is good. This was a light, refreshing and sparkling white wine which was actually very good. Pignoletto Frizzante of 2011 from Gaggioli.
Afterwards, the fellas taught me how to make an Italian Espresso using a mocha (like we use in Morocco, actually) and Segafredo coffee which is also a product of the region. Then before bed, I had a glass of the Sangiovese di Romagna which according to legend comes from when the Capuchin Fathers of the Santarcangelo convent served some of their wine to a distinguished guest – when he asked the name, they didn’t have one – so one of the monks said it was ‘Blood of Jupitor’ since it was Red and the convent was on Jupitor Hill which in time became ‘Sangiovese’. This was a delicious dark ruby red wine with mild tannins and a dry aftertaste that was ever so slightly (and enjoyably) bitter. Very nice indeed.
If you want to check out the whole region, blogville, and more check out the following links. By the way…one of the cool aspects of this project is that they’ve said – you don’t have to do anything, promote or do what you want….it’s up to you! Literally, here is a bit from the terms and conditions…
It’s up to you! We are happy to give you bloggers complete freedom and trust. We are sure that you are going to do a great job and we want you to write about what really cares for you and your readers!
Official hashtag is #blogville and mentions on twitter can be made @BlogVilleEmRom. The official site to include in the posts for information about the Emilia Romagna iswww.emiliaromagnaturismo.com
By the way, here are my first impressions recorded by the Blogville gang…rumour has it that we are going to be interviewed by Cosmopolitan – yes, that Cosmo.