Food and wines
Food in the Marche region equally shares from the bounty of the sea as well as from the countryside ; the region can boast an incredible variety of dishes, strictly based upon tradition and local produce. The use of fresh, top quality materials assembled with the minimum of fuss marks Marche’s food. As with any rural diet, much use is made of food gathered from the wild; mushrooms, game, nuts and field herbs. Leftover food, too, is an important asset, and many of the now most fashionable dishes were first developed to use up such things as stale bread or parts of the pig. Some real excellencies of food and wines are guaranteed through Quality Assurance and Product Certification, such as DOP ( Protected Designation of Origin) and IGP ( Protected Geographical Indication).
Some of the most famous food and wines are listed hereunder:
Olives and oil
The great variety of olives grown in the Marche are used both for the finest food and oil production. Very popular worldwide is the Ascolana olive, a meat stuffed and fried olive, made from a particular locally grown fleshy green olive. The most excellent extra virgin olive oil is produced in Le Marche from local varieties and have a typical light aroma with hints of gras and almond.
Several specialities typical of the Marche region are the Ciavuscolo, a soft spreadable pork salame protected under the IGP quality seal, the Fegatini, a liver salami, or the Lonza a cured pork loin, all delicious. Famous are also the Carpegna ham, protected under the DOP seal, and the Porchetta, a whole stuffed and flavoured pig, roasted on a spit.
Le Marche offer a great variety of delicious cheeses ranging from the sheep's milk Pecorino cheeses of which probably the famoust is the "Pecorino di Fossa" a strong flavoured cheese, riped in limestone caves, to the Caciotte, mostly fresh cheese with a delicate and sweet taste. Amongst the Caciotta cheese one should be certainly mentioned: it is the "Casciotta di Urbino" the only protected under the DOP seal.
The region's unique pasta dish is Vincisgrassi, a kind of baked lasagna, made with meat sauce and the addition of béchamel. In traditional recipes chicken giblets and possibly sweetbreads are also used. Among the various types of pasta, the thin macaroni of Campofilone are a specialty appreciated all over the world.
The region has a long lasting tradition in winemaking and a lot of wines reached excellent quality, both red and white wines. Amongst them a quite numerous selection of wines reached the DOP and DOCG quality seals, assesing the increasing improving quality and notority of Le Marche wines. These wines are: Bianchello del Metauro, Colli Maceratesi , Colli Pesaresi, Esino, Falerio, I Terreni di San Severino, Lacrima di Morro d'Alba, Terre di Offida, Pergola, Rosso Conero, Serrapetrona, Rosso Piceno, San Ginesio, Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesi and Verdicchio di Matelica; the DOCG wines are: Conero, Offida, Vernaccia di Serrapetrona, Castelli di Jesi Verdicchio Riserva, Verdicchio di Matelica Riserva.