Archive for Valentine’s Day

Love Phrases

Posted in Italian Culture and Living with tags , , , on February 14, 2014 by Pamela Marasco

love signThe Italian language is the most romantic language in the world. The high percentage of Italian words that end in vowels give the language a musicality with sounds overflowing into unrestricted puffs of air flowing over lips, teeth, tongue and throat. Italian is a phonetic language, which means that it is spoken the way it is written. Every vowel is pronounced no matter how many of them are in a row. Such as the word aiutare where each syllable is pronounced rapidly but distinctly (AH-EE-OO-TAH-RAY). Separately yet flowing into one another without any pause. A pretty romantic description of a language.

Today is St. Valentine’s Day, a day when love is in our hearts, minds and lips. Here are a few “love” phrases in Italian that you can use to create an Italian inspired Valentine’s Day.

Ti amo = I love you (To be used with your significant other)

Ti voglio bene = I love you/I like you very much (To be used with family and friends)

Mi piaci = I like you

Mi piaci tanto = I really like you

Ti adoro =  I adore you

Tu sei il mio bello/la mia bella = You are my handsome/beautiful one

Sei l’amore della mia vita = You are the love of my life

The Italian WineMatchMaker Thinks Pink for Valentine’s Day

Posted in Food and Drink with tags , , , , , , on February 5, 2014 by Pamela Marasco

time for wineThink pink as in wine selections for Valentine’s Day. Our Italian inspired choices all have one thing in common, the color pink. Four wines, four different expressions of the Italian Rosé chosen for their excellent enogastronomical versatility meaning they are a perfect food pairing whenever a white wine is “too little” and a red wine is “too much”

Here are our picks to introduce you to world of Italian Rosé Wine.

Selection 1. Ferrari Classic Method Sparkling Rosé - crisp and sharp from the foothills of the Alps not far from Lago di Garda in the Trentino region. The pale red rose colors in the glass have a bouquet of blossoming flowers, red berries and wild strawberries.

Selection 2.  Banfi Rosa Regali Brachetto d’Acqui  from Piedmonte- I have written about this wine on more than one occasion because I have sweet memories of drinking it.  A “delicious bottle of silky rose colored bubbles”. The food wine pairings go from the sublime to the simple including this breakfast casserole that would be the perfect pairing for a Valentine’s Day breakfast.

Selection 3. A Tuscan Rosatello from Ruffino -  with notes of raspberries and strawberries, the bottle label is a romantic splash of pink.

Selection 4. Serra Lori Isola dei Nuraghi from Sardinia – described as being reminiscent of unsugared strawberries and cream. This wine with notes of  mint, pomegranate and licorice has many nuances.

Espresso -ly Yours

Posted in Food and Drink, Italian Culture and Living with tags , , , , , , , on February 11, 2013 by Pamela Marasco

Amore-illyHow do latte lovers celebrate Valentine’s Day?  Romantic baristas know that a microfoam heart is the best way to begin Valentine’s Day but why stop there.  Here are 5 more Italian inspired ways to espress yourself on February 14th that are sure to win your Valentine’s heart.

Make a simply irresistible Cappuccino Souffle.

Add a Trollbead Sterling Silver Mocha Coffee Bean Bead  to her bracelet to remind her to always start the day with you.

Bake a special occasion cake that pushes all the right buttons like  Coffee Chocolate Layer Cake with Mocha Mascarpone Frosting.

Send a bouquet of Coffee Break Roses, a striking burnt terra-cotta rose with a tip of crema. It is commercially available in limited quantities.

Looking for a Coffee-Cocktail to espress your feelings. Here are two espresso-based cocktails courtesy of Illy USA. Amore is served hot with Amaretto di Saronno®, Beatrice on ice with vodka and Grand Marnier®.

A Valentine from Verona

Posted in Italian Culture and Living, Travel with tags , , on February 6, 2013 by Pamela Marasco
valentine and veronaVerona – a city so famous for love that it gets thousands of letters simply addressed to “Juliet, Verona Italy. The week before February 14th is even more enchanting when the city celebrates un cuore da scoprire “a heart to discover” with a city-wide Valentine’s Day market set up in the shape of a heart. There are concerts, events and the “Cara Giulietta” (“Dear Juliet”) prize awarded on Valentine’s Day to the author of the most heart-felt love letter received during the previous year. The main pedestrian streets of the old town take on a magical atmosphere created by large bright red heart decorations and the shops pay homage to love by decorating their storefronts. On Valentine’s day and the following Sunday, lovers can share a collective Kiss in the main piazza after which a cloud of love explodes into thousands of red hearts.

Italian Valentine’s Day Collection with a product said to “lead a man like a dog”

Posted in Art, Food and Drink, Italian Culture and Living, Travel with tags , , , on January 29, 2013 by Pamela Marasco

A desirable collection of food, wine, art and design that shares the color Red and the Romance of Italy from a lipstick red espresso machine to an Italian red sauce make with tomatoes botanically related to the mandrake, or “love plant”, the tomato was once believed to be a powerful aphrodisiac, said to be able to “lead a man like a dog .

. . .   (click) the Red Passion Collection.


Tacuinum Sanitatis

Red is the Color of My True Love’s . . . espresso machine!

Posted in Art, Food and Drink, Italian Culture and Living with tags , , , , , , , on February 11, 2012 by Pamela Marasco

La Pavoni Cellini Maranello Espresso MachineRed coffee machines are one of the most popular and top selling home appliances bought on-line. The color red seems to make a fashion statement whether modern or retro. Like the red-painted cam covers on the Ferrari Testarossa , the color seems to represent a powerful piece of engineering.  La Pavoni, one of Italy’s oldest espresso machine manufactures, makes the Cellini Push Switch Red Maranello that looks like it could easily go from 0-60 in about 5 seconds.

The prominent dial and cone-shaped appeaBugatti Diva Espresso Machinerance of the Bugatti Diva Red Coffee Espresso Machine could easily start your engine every morning.

The Gaggia Colour Red (see gallery below) with the Pannarello turbo frothing attachment is advertised to “make a statement no matter where it’s located”.

Illy Frances Frances Espresso Machine

So appealing is Illy’s iconic Francis Francis Red iper Espresso that it has been raised to luxury status by none other than Forbes magazine.

Any just might make the perfect present for your espresso loving Valentine.







A Vintage Italian Valentine

Posted in Art with tags , , , on January 29, 2012 by Pamela Marasco








Typewriter that is -                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      The legendary Italian designer Ettore Sottsass first introduced the Olivetti Valentine typewriter in 1969. He wanted to make a portable typewriter for “people on the move”. Fast forward 43 years and the design aesthetic of vintage Italian still survives the passing of time. Now featured in the Museum of Modern Art, the iconic design of this Valentine in form and function got people to think outside of the box.

And the color! Can I get my hands on one for Valentine’s Day?


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