Boretto is a little village located on the right shore of the river Po, about 25 kms from Parma. The remains of this ancient town’s Roman roots – it was called Brixellum during the Roman era – can still be seen in the Antiquarium where ancient Roman relics and sculptures are on display. This town is most famous, however, for being the antebellum set for one of Italy’s most loved film series: that of Peppone and Don Camillo, played by Gino Cervi and Fernandel and based on the books by Giovannino Guareschi. For the 36th time, last weekend it housed a national bikers’ gathering……………and we were there, with a couple of friends…….As you can see, we weren’t alone….
We had a reservation at a restaurant some 30 kms from there, it was a very sunny and warm morning, it was pure joy to drive along those roads till we got there, really hungry at that point….
The place is so cozy and friendly, it was the third time we were there (it’s a little far from home, but worth it), and the owners are part of the equation as well.
The care and the attention they put in all the dishes they serve (simple but oh…so tasteful) it’s one of main reasons we like the place. Others had some cheese and veggies pie, I choose some polenta au gratin with smoked pork fat and herbs
and all four decided for this wonderful risotto with minced fresh salami meat………..
and while the men enjoyed a delicious (their words) tiramisù, E and I (the fair sex) had strawberries and ice-cream
After the coffee and a long conversation about next bike trips and summer vacations (nothing decided for sure yet) we have a walk along the country roads leading to the main village and through a hole in an old wall we had a sneak peek of a villa currently under renovation, due to be opened to the public again at the end of next month. “Villa Medici del Vascello”, is a composite structure derived from a castle of the XV century, transformed many times in Sforza era in the 16th and 17th centuries. The present park is Romantic in style and houses rare botanic plants and stylish ‘imitations’ in style. The villa is also famous because it was home for some time till her death to Cecilia Gallerani, the The Lady with an Ermine painted by Leonardo da Vinci.
Not too far from the villa, there’s a castle called “Mina della Scala”.
The castle was built in 1596, as deduced by a walled headstone, by the Count Ludovico Schizzi from Cremona and it was built for him and his family as a summer house and for official royal meetings. In 1875 due to the marriage between Augusto Mina and Francesca della Scala, of the Cremona branch of the Family Veronese, the two names were joined to call the castle. The visits at the castle are possible on appointment only.
Considering all the interesting places were closed, we decided to hit the road towards home, with a coffee break in Colorno, sitting at a bar just at the corner of the Royal Palace, still under partial restoration after the last earthquake (for more about the place, read what I wrote here or here
It was a nice day out, doing what we like the most doing with our friends. Now that spring is really here, with longer and warmer days, I hope there will be lots of days like this.