Hotel Arnaldo, based in the area between Modena and Reggio Emilia


This is Emilia

Text taken from the menu of the Clinica Gastronomica of the ‘60s

The region between the Po River and city of Pesaro was called Emilia after the “old Roman consular road opened in 187 AD by Marco Emilio Lepido and called AEMILIA”. Today, Emilia is actually the northern part of the region, whose principal cities include Piacenza, Parma, Reggio Emilia, Modena, Bologna and Ferrara.
The other part of the region, encompassing Forli’ and Ravenna, is called Romagna.
The land is rich, fertile, and very well-cultivated. Its cereals and excellent wines, among which Lambrusco is one of the best, are highly valued. The dairy industry is very active and produces exceptional butter as well as the famous Reggiano cheese (grana) and the renowned “parmigiano”.
Cured meats are a true specialty of the area, from culatello to Parma’s prosciutto, Modena’s zampone, and Bologna’s mortadella.
Many things bear witness to the history of Emilia, and various monuments remind us of the important social movements, duchies, and artistic periods that have been a part of it. Many beautiful Emilian churches, in particular the basilica of Saint Savino in Piacenza and the cathedrals of Modena and Parma, are examples of Romanesque architecture. Built around the 11th century, these last two cathedrals house the ancient sculptures of Wiligelmo and Antelami. Next to the cathedral of Parma is located the beautiful baptistery, while behind the cathedral of Modena is the “Ghirlandina” spire, 88 meters high and completed in 1261. One of the most impressive palaces of Italy is also located in Modena: the Ducal Palace, which is now the headquarters of the military academy.
In addition to the painting gallery, the museum also houses one of the richest Italian libraries: the Estense library, which includes an amazing masterpiece of illumination of the Italian Renaissance: the famous “Bible” that Borso d’Este had illuminated between 1455 and 1461, ordering it to be made rich in gold and colors.
The “first” Italian national flag can be found in Reggio, in the main room of the Town Hall. It was created to be the standard of the Cispadane Republic of Emilia and later became the glorious tricolour flag.
In Bologna the cathedral of Saint Petronio is one of the largest Catholic churches, and is graced by a marvelous portal, an incomplete masterpiece by the Sienese artist Jacopo della Quercia. The façade once boasted the mighty statue of Pope Julius II, modelled and cast in bronze by Michelangelo Buonarroti. In addition to the cathedral, many buildings and monuments are worth investigating: from the church of Saint Francesco in the Palazzo della Mercanzia to the famous Neptune fountain of Giambologna and the high towers of Asinelli (97.2 meters high) and Grisenda (48.16 meters high).
Emilia is also a land of many distinguished men and artists. Among the writers: Ludovico Ariosto (Reggio), “il Boiardo” (Scandiano), Pico della Mirandola, il Tassoni (Modena), Ludovico Muratori (Vignola). Famous inventors: from Galvani (Bologna) to Guglielmo Marconi (Sasso). Brilliant painters: Guido Reni (Bologna); Allegri, called il Correggio after his birthplace; Mazzola, called Parmigianinio (Parma); Barbierei, called Guercino (Cento); Fontanesi of Reggio; and the famous architect Barozzi, called Vignola. It is also a land of great musicians among whose masters are Argangelo Corelli (Fusignano), Giuseppe Verdi (Busseto), and Arturo Toscanini (Parma).
Rubiera is in the center of this region of fertile lands and inspired minds and offers a comfortable place to stay at Arnaldo’s inn (an excellent 3-star hotel near Reggio Emilia) where one may even meet his children and grandchildren while enjoying the flavorful and delicious Emilian cuisine of times gone by.