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Italian favor is found in Bologna

Posted June. 05, 2021 07:08,   

Updated June. 05, 2021 07:08


Italy is one of the most frequently visited places in the world but few visitors take a close look around Bologna. The go-to itinerary across Italy may start from Milan through Venice through Florence to Rome. However, this author differentiates himself from other travelers by choosing to visit Bologna. Working 20 years as a journalist, the self-proclaimed “quirky traveler” fell in love with Italian cuisine so deeply at the age of 50 that he quitted his job to leave for Italy to study culinary arts. Afterwards, he happened to get enticed by Bologna where he stayed only for one month. Bologna is famous as the scared place of raw pasta made from eggs and flour and the birthplace of Italy’s most beloved ingredient cheese and salami. This book keeps a tasty record of his journey to the secret of Bolognan favor in a city lit up with vigor and joy.

You are reminded of craftsmanship that sits deeply with Italian people behind Italian pasta and pizza, which you must have tasted during your trip to Italy or in South Korea. For example, the True Neapolitan Pizza Association requires that south Italian pizza, a.k.a. the origin of pizza, is supposed to have a dough thinner than 3mm measured from the center. It bans any pizza thicker than the standard from being called Napoli pizza. Italian people consider any mixed food styles an act of profanity such as spaghetti from the south with ragu sauce made from tomato paste and minced meat from the northern region on top of it. This is where Italian people show a high sense of pride in their traditional cuisine. As Italian descendants have cultivated their own history living dispersedly since the demise of the Roman Empire, they put more emphasis on the historical and traditional values of regions where they have lived rather than on national identity as a whole. This book also describes how residents are dedicated to preserving the true colors of their food culture.

The author captivates your attention by not only touching upon pasta & pizza, ham, cheese and wine but also sharing his observations of people on the street, facades of buildings, galleries and other cultural aspects of the city. This book is a container of his hands-on experiences with Bologna – the city of “la rossa” (the Red) due to red brick architectures; of "la universita" (the university) as the origin of universities began; and of “la bellezza” (the beauty) because of a large portion of gorgeous ladies.

Jae-Hee Kim jetti@donga.com