From sausages to sea snails, in Italy you name the food and it probably has its own festival! Good food and good fun are all part of the country’s la dolce vita lifestyle and Casey Wallen enjoyed getting a fresh taste of the local celebrations…
“I love arriving somewhere and being lucky enough to find a local festival happening. On a trip to Sorrento it was the annual fish festival. It’s when all the restaurants who are vying for supremacy in the field of preparing fresh fish dishes, make their kitchens mobile, relocate to the beach and cook up a feast for the locals.
The fish was straight off the boats and we could see the trawlers pulling in with more fresh catches. There were hundreds of people on the beach, trying a little something from every stand, loud gesticulating chefs delighting the crowds with their skills, a local choir singing pop songs on the stage, neon and streamers everywhere and the night was topped off with a fireworks display.
Away from the beach, the main street becomes the centre of festivities. It’s an elegant strip lined with shops and the place to promenade. There are a couple of small Limoncello factories where you can watch the local lemon liqueur being prepared and then buy absolutely anything and everything that is lemon scented or flavoured. Citrus fruit abounds in this region and even the trees on the side of the pavements are lemon trees, so you can pick a lemon right on the street. Other shops specialise in inlaid woodwork with intricate designs and there are some where you can see the craftsman at work. These are great souvenirs!
Sorrento is has a resort town feel but there are also some great local gems to discover. Speaking of which, all the locals had their tip on which restaurant was the best and encouraged us to try absolutely everything, but my pick of the festival was a fresh seafood pizza!”
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* photo by Milton Elias – Intrepid Photography Competition