HeartRome

My life and times in the eternal city and beyond

July 2015

Italian Lakes: Lago di Orta 

If you haven’t heard of Lake Orta, you’re not alone. Not many Italians have either! French novelist Honorè de Balzak described it as a “A grey pearl in a green jewel-box”. And I couldn’t agree more, for grey pearls are rare and unique and this encapsulates exactly what this stunning treasure of the world is. Lago di Orta is the smallest lake in the northern lake district of Italy. This

Continue reading…

Stazione di Posta: Where Rome’s Old and New Meld into One

Have you ever eaten in an old slaughterhouse? Well I did recently! And not just any old slaughterhouse. The ex-mattatoio in Testaccio site now houses the MACRO museum, the Citta dell’altra Economia and a Michelin star restaurant and is a place which played a most significant role in the birth of roman cuisine (read more about this in my post about cucina romana).   Stazione di Posta, the brainchild of young roman

Continue reading…

Sicilian Wine and the Small Businesses that Make Italy Tick 

All businesses have their place in their world, but small businesses are the ones I love the most. The ones that are family-run, by passionate people who are committed to producing and selling quality products in a responsible way. And after years, still love what they do! Pietro Morreale is in his 60s and has been running Casa Vinicola Morreale in the Province of Agrigento, in south-west Sicily for around

Continue reading…

My 10 Best Places for Pizza in Rome

Not all pizza is equal. And in Rome there certainly ain’t no shortage of places to eat one!  From the pizzeria to small pizza al taglio joints, options are plentiful. From Roman pizza (the paper thin, almost charred version) to Neapolitan (the one with a thicker crust), to the best marinara slice I’ve ever tasted – in my life – here are my 10 favourites. And if you want to keep

Continue reading…

10 Things to Eat and Drink in Agrigento, Sicily

Sicily is one of my favourite regions in Italy for food. While so many regions have unique culinary traditions borne from rich local produce, there’s just something about Sicilian cuisine that makes my mouth water even just writing about it! Culturally diverse, the cuisine has Greek, Middle Eastern and African influences and changes from city to city, town to town.  On the island’s south-west coast, Agrigento’s cuisine is about as

Continue reading…

Agrigento: Where the very best of the Mediterranean collides

What’s not to love about Sicily? Throughout history, the largest island in the Mediterranean has been ruled by the Romans, the Greeks, the Arabs, the list goes on. It’s no wonder the place is an eclectic mix of cultures and this influence can not only be seen in its architecture, but tasted in its rich, diverse cuisine and felt in its truly unique identity. While the cities of Palermo and

Continue reading…

Favara: Sicily’s Secret Cool

A lot about Italy in the international press of late is about doom and gloom; how the eurozone and broader global financial crisis has just about crippled this country’s economy and people. But there are also many community projects and people committed to culture, growth and community. These don’t generally make for good news stories though.  Speaking of myths and generic news stories – mention Sicily to anyone and you

Continue reading…