Balsamic, Bottura and beautiful cars…
In The Italians, Luigi Barzini offered a consummate portrait of the national character of his compatriots. He cheekily suggested that the art of appearing rich was perfected in places like Modena. The tiny principality boasted ‘immense princely palaces, castles, vast churches, and stately opera houses’ wildly disproportionate to its size. It may be tiny, but the visitor wins here, with all the sights within walking or cycling distance.
Modena’s no slouch when it comes to food either; tortellini, mortadella, Lambrusco wine and, of course, balsamic vinegar. And it also has one of the finest restaurants in the world, Osteria Francescana. Thanks to world-class chef Massimo Bottura, the restaurant has three Michelin stars, and in 2012 was voted 5th best in the world*.
*In 2018, Osteria Francescana was upgraded… to the World’s Best Restaurant.
Read my six-page article in culture magazine Bologna (Issue 3 Autumn 2012). The Italian Tourist Board awarded me ‘Best Travel Photography’ for my photos appearing in this feature.
Among the places I visited in Modena
- Balsamic vinegar ‘factory’ (single room in the attic of an old farmhouse)
- Ferrari museum
- Osteria Francescana