Hope, Faith and Charity; Honoring the Flag of Italy!

By Alberto Amore

20 regions,110 provinces and 8101 Comuni fought, invaded and resisted each other for thousands of years, only to join together for the final time during the ‘risorgimento’ as  ‘La Repubblica Italiana’, ‘The Republic of Italy’ under a single flag, that of the Green, White and Red, known as ‘il Tricolore’.

The flag is seen everywhere in Italy, in the Green fertile mountains, the White wash of the water lining the peninsula and the red of the volcanos. It is in the red and white wines and the mountain fresh mineral water that adorns every table in the country and of course it is in so many meals, the white Pasta, the Red Tomato’s and the fragrant Green Basil that grows wildly on the roadsides. But what do the tricolores really mean and where did they originate from?

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Popes, Pig Trotters and Red Underwear; Italian New Years’ Traditions!

By Alberto Amore

New Years Eve in Italy, known as ‘Capodanno’ also marks the night of Saint Sylvester of ‘Notte di San Silvestro’. It is a night tied up in ancient mythologies, religious practices and red underwear, but we’ll get to that in a minute. The Italians invited the known world to join in wild celebrations to see in the New Year and celebrate new beginnings.

In southern Italy the ancient practice of dropping old and unused goods, often kitchenware from the window is becoming less typical in the modern day.  It is, however, a must, throughout the old country to share ‘cena’ or dinner with friends and or family. Who would have thought that there would be food involved in a celebration concocted by our Italian ancestors?

Various meals are traditional to various meals but commonly, cotechino, pig trotters or entrails are eaten with lentils. In fact lentils said to represent coins for good fortune are almost universally eaten throughout the old country. When the bell tolls at midnight tradition asks that you eat one spoonful of lentils per chime to bring good fortune for the year ahead.

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Italian Grapes Find a Home in California Soil

Italian, wine, grapes, CaliforniaBeginning shortly after the unification of their country in 1861, millions of Italians emigrated to the United States and to Canada and countries in South America. Many brought grapevine cuttings with them.

Never be surprised to see an Italian surname among the descendants of those immigrants making wine in the Americas today (for just two examples, Zuccardi in Argentina or Pisano of Uruguay). In the United States, Italian-born winery and winemaker names are nearly as ubiquitous as vines.

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Very cool video we came across recently on decorating your lattes. So easy anyone can do it!


Visit the Godfather House

Pretty cool video that we came across recently. This home in Staten Island was used as the Corleone mansion in the Godfather. The wedding scene was filmed in this family’s backyard.