Caseificio Di Nucci, Agnone: Cheese in the Apennine hills

Caseificio Di Nucci, Agnone: Cheese in the Apennine hills

A visit to Di Nucci

In 1662 Leonardo Di Nucci was a shepherd moving his herds along the traturra. the wide tracks that weave through Abruzzo and Molise down to the plains of Puglia. The Di Nucci family have been making award-winning artisan cheese here in the Apennine hills, in Alto Molise, ever since.

Today, the 11th generation of the family use the same methods and ingredients of their forebears – a whey starter and raw milk, avoiding the use of any preservatives or milk enzymes. Their milk is sourced from carefully chosen local producers resulting in an amazing product in which you can actually taste the grasses and herbs of the seasons. No two cheeses are the same.

Franco Di Nucci took us around the small factory where the hand-made cheese is formed by a dedicated team of craftsmen.

The visit was unforgettable – incredible smells and tastes. Franco is a superb speaker, giving us the family story in slow and very clear Italian and explaining carefully when we got a bit lost. He is passionate about his family history and the rich artisan culture of this region. The love and attention that is poured into his produce is evident.

Caseificio Di Nucci continues to win international recognition, in 2013 gaining the ‘Supergold’ of the World Cheese Awards. Ricotta, Stracciata, scamorza and caciocavallo are the most distinctive cheeses of this region. The Stracciata also won 1st place in the Italian Cheese of the Year Awards 2017. Congratulations!

As a surprise bonus to the visit we discovered that our driver, Fernando, is one of Franco’s valued milk suppliers!

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Your Italian Prince charming! A quick lesson in grammar

Your Italian Prince charming! A quick lesson in grammar

Prince Charming shows not all Italian language rules are the same

Why is it called “PRINCIPE AZZURRO”?! In Italian, the translation of the expression “Prince Charming” is “Prince Azzurro”, but why must a prince be coloured? Not all Italian language rules are the same!

The answer is hidden in the history of Italy, when it was a monarchy ruled by the Savoy family. In fact, King Vittorio Emanuele, on his trip to Naples in 1896 to know the family of his future wife Elena, wore a blue uniform to honour the future queen having blue eyes. Since then King Vittorio Emanuele has been called “Prince Azzurro”, like his ancestors known as “Green Count” and “Red Count”. With the release of some of the most important fairy tales such as Cinderella or The Beautiful Sleeping In The Woods, the handsome charming blue-eyed, blond-haired boy riding a white horse becomes the blue prince.

 

Masculine names ending in’-a’ / Feminine in ‘-o’:

There are some male Italian names that, singularly, end in -a:

* IL CINEMA

* IL PANORAMA

* IL PIGIAMA

* IL POETA

* IL PROBLEMA

And female Italian names that, in the singular, end up in -o:

* LA FOTO

* LA MANO

* LA MOTO

* LA METRO

* LA RADIO

 

“Take a picture”

Many foreigners make the mistake of translating directly from English

“Take a picture” → “prendere un foto”

In Italian, however, it is said: “FARE UNA FOTO”

Eg.

*Faccio una foto al panorama.

* Mi puoi fare una foto?

* Io e Marco abbiamo fatto una foto ai nostri figli

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A visit to the Sanniti sacred temple ruins in Pietrabbondante

A visit to the Sanniti sacred temple ruins in Pietrabbondante

A letter from Jenny to the guests who had only stayed one week and missed this visit

Cari tutti. Sunday dawned overcast and the Birthday Girl (!) enjoyed a festive prima colazione including a baby tiramisu with one candle on top! Afterwards we made a visit to the Sanniti sacred temple ruins in Pietrabbondante.

This was previously thought to be the ruins of a town but is now considered more likely to have been a sacred place consisting of a large temple flanked by smaller side temples and workshops or services, with, at its centre, an arena - for plays or meetings.  All this was built on the side of a hill with a sacred bosco behind, overlooking a stunning view. The arena is notable for its acoustic, but especially for the first three rows of seats. Each section of these is made from one piece of stone giving a curved integral back, ergonomically supportive and sound. There are a few examples of carvings, words and images, including the names of the patrons - one of whom went on to become a Roman senator after the Sanniti had been “taken over”.  Also a statue of Atlas.

Photos attached (courtesy of my official photographer David) show the arena with a glimpse of the setting and another of your correspondent making friends with Atlas!

Alessandro joined us for a super long lunch at a local agriturismo where, after a prosecco on the terrace we returned inside as the clouds became more threatening. As we finished dining the “deluvio” started! I’ve had downpours of rain on my birthday in England before, but never had thunder, lightning and hail as we did on our way back to Agnone. So we just had to finish the day with more prosecco ………!

Must sign off now, as tomorrow your correspondent has to rise early and, suitably coffered and made presentable, accost various men in the Cafe Letterario to find Tim Peters, the guy who is coming to buy a house in Agnone - well someone has to look after him as Jenifer has other commitments!

We missed you all today and hope you got home safely.

Abbracci grandissimi - scriverò ancora fra poco.

jm

 

Explore how the site used to look in this incredible computer-generated short film from Capware.it

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Let's discuss what works best for you...
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