Panini Girl

My obsessions-Italy and Cooking

April 7, 2014
paninigirl

23 comments

Dreaming Of The South

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It’s been six months since I was last in Italy. Leaving is never easy and not a day goes by that I don’t day dream about being there. As much as I am taken with Lucca and the Garfagnana area, I think a trip south is long overdue.

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I’ve been carrying Carla Capalbo’s book-The Food and Wine Guide to Naples and Campania-around with me and have been studying it page by page. She reviews the provinces in this area and each chapter begins with a map to help organize visits to restaurants, wineries, bakeries, cheese producers and more. I envision us setting out each day and heading to a different town in hopes of discovering its culinary treasure.

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The easy part of this dream trip was deciding where to base ourselves-Calitri-the birthplace of my grandparents. It’s been nine years since we last visited and that was only a brief overnight on our way the Amalfi coast. This time I hope to connect with relatives and maybe get someone to tutor me in the art of Calitri’s pasta dish-cingul-similar to cavatelli. I’ve made it a few times, but so far have not mastered getting it to the melt in your mouth consistency that my grandmother’s had.

A lot has changed since our last visit. At that time the restoration of the centro storico was just beginning and there was only a handful of people living in this part of town. Now this area is thriving and and it’s here that we will rent an apartment.

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If any of you have been to Calitri I would love to hear from you so leave me a message.

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23 thoughts on “Dreaming Of The South

  1. One day I also hope to visit the southern areas of Italy. The furthest south I have been is Otranta on the East coast. I look forward to reading your stories.
    I fly out in exactly 4 weeks from today for Italy. 4 nights in Rome and then 4 weeks in Bagni di Lucca. I cannot wait to “live” in a local village again. Lyn

  2. Italy is in my heart too, for as long as I can remember.

  3. I had to Google Calitri to see where it is. I love the south of Italy. I hope you have a wonderful time.

    • Debra-it’s very different from Tuscany, as you know, but it is just as enticing. I wish I could say we were leaving for Italy tomorrow but right now I’m hoping for the fall.

  4. Your lovely photos make me yearn to be in Italy again. Love the first one, you even captured a rainbow over the town.

  5. I’ve been to Calitri six times as I’ve been to Calitri six times as my mother/father were born there. I love it, and hope to return there sometime in 2015. Marco DiNapoli

  6. What glorious photos! I have never been to Calitri, but i would surely like to visit after reading this post. And thank you for the tip on the book. I’ll have to get a copy!

  7. The closest I’ve been to Calitri is Ariano Irpino. I go to my paese, Orsara di Puglia every year, and it doesn’t look too far away if you have a car. Orsara has more than it’s share of fabulous restaurants for a town of 3,000! My friend Peppe Zullo has a restaurant and cooking school and has been on ‘Uno Mattina’ several times. His website is http://www.peppezullo.it . Ciao, Cristina

  8. Buon giorno! I just learned that Calitri will be featured in a future House Hunters International show on the Home and Garden Network HGTV “www.hgtv.com” (the date is unknown at this time, but will keep you posted. Ciao for now! Marco

  9. Ciao Panini girl! I have a house in Calitri – 2 actually, inherited from my grandfather. Our family is from further south, but he wanted to retire in Calitri. I wrote a book about his adventures, I would love to send you a copy of the print version as you will recognize many of the Calitri stories, photos and people! It’s called “How Do We Love?”

  10. It’s been a long time since we’ve been to Calitri but remember it being lovely. We ate a really fabulous restaurant in the old quarter; will have to look it up as I don’t remember the name. Hop over into Basilicata to the Cascate di San Fele and the wine country at the base of Mt. Vulture!

    • Valerie-we are hoping to go to Calitri for a week in October and then head down to Lecce which has been on my list to see! I want to really explore the area and maybe connect with relatives.

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