The region of Emilia Romagna is one of Italy’s best known food areas. It is home to the heavyweights of the cuisine such as bolognese, Parma ham, balsamic vinegar and Parmesan.
To eat in Emilia Romagna we based ourselves in Parma, another stunning town (does Italy even do mediocre ones?):
And ate our way through Parmesan cheese (I had never had this as a starter before – just some delicious massive lumps on a plate) and wafer thin Parma ham with fried dough:
Horse tartare (tasty) with Parmesan and balsamic vinegar:
Lard to spread on toast (better than it sounds) and ribs braised in white wine (falling off the bone):
Risotto with asparagus and Parma ham (rich) and orange and fennel salad (refreshing):
Pizza with wild greens and sausage (thin and crispy):
Along with gelato obviously.
It was a healthy few days.
From here we headed to the Ligurian coast to visit the Cinque Terre; five quaint villages clinging to the cliffs above the Med, which you can hike between.
We found a beautiful apartment in nearby La Spezia and settled in before a two hour cliffside hike from Vernazza to Monterosso. We got our sweat on and the views were stunning. Apart from Venice, this was the only place we visited which was touristy, with hordes of American teens. But nothing could ruin the views:
Next stop: Piedmont