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Published on Tuesday, September 17, 2013

US Travel agents say Romagna we adore

Treated to astonishing hospitality on Italian inspection visit

US travel agents put their enthusiastic stamp of approval on the scenery, history, hospitality and food and wine of Romagna.

On a whistle-stop tour of Romagna's hilltop and seaside highlights a group of travel agents and tour operators from all over the US tasted the delights of Romagna.

Hosted by Best of Romagna, US travel trade operators from as far apart as New York, Los Angeles, Paris and Rome were delighted by Romagna's massive tourism offer in a region less than the size of Rhode Island!

The group tasted Brisighella's distinctive DOC olive oil, Bertinoro's ancient wines and Cervia's sea salt amongst a vast variety of other delicacies.

In the space of just 5 days the agents learned to make and cook and eat a dozen forms of pasta, learned how mosaics were created to last 2,000 years, and surveyed the views from no less that three mountaintops.

But more importantly they were greeted by and welcomed by mayors, councilmen and women, vineyard owners, hoteliers and chefs in communities all over Romagna and treated to a quality of hospitality that has almost been forgotten, even in Europe.

At the San Pancrazio Folk museum  , the local mayor greeted them and offered great local food and wine and home-grown entertainment by the end of the evening everyone was singing "Romagna Mia"! Sunday morning they visited Ravenna and enjoyed extraordinary mosaics.

Beautiful Bagnacavallo has an unique elliptical colonnaded piazza where lunch was served in the Osteria Piazza Nuovo  ,

At Brisighella, after tasting the unique local olive oil, the group enjoyed a walk up the hill with the mayor to prepare themselves for another substantial lunch of local ingredients at Trattoria La Cassetta

And in the afternoon there was a walk to see the exceptional 1930's architecture in Mussolini's home town, Forli, part of the Atrium Project to use totalitarian architecture to generate tourism - yet another exceptional dinner - this time at San Domenico  rounded off the day.

And the learning highlight of the trip? Learning to cook pasta and Piadina hands on with instructors at Italy's best cookery school - famous Casa Artusi   followed by a buffet of exceptional local specialities including Fossa and Squacqerone cheese, pears poached in local Sangiovese wine, salamis made of the famous Mora Romagnola pork, sensational breads and local jams and sauces.

Bertinoro is an exceptional wine-growing village on a citadel-topped mountain, host to an unique museum of Christian, Muslim and Jewish life. After wine tasting of the ancient wines at Celli vineyard  , grown since before the beginning of Christianity the group enjoyed dinner at Bertinoro's signature restaurant and wine museum Ca de Be

And on the final action-packed day the travel agents visited the ancient salt pans at Cervia, ,tasted the culinary salt, saw the purpose-built 19th century Milano Marittima resort before travelling to the world's oldest republic - mountaintop San Marino for a walking tour, a historic train ride and an extraordinarily good locally-sourced dinner at the local Michelin restaurant - Ringhi

Accommodation was at the 4 star country Relais Villa Roncuzzi,  and the 4 star boutique seaside Le Palme Hotel

The participant's conclusion - this tourism offer is so good that we can't waste it - now to create great Romagna tours for our best clients with these exceptional and very sustainable ingredients!

Further details about Romagna at and at

Valere Tjolle


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