AT THE COURT OF AN ADVENTURE CAPTAIN – Federico da Montefeltro and the mystery of what is painted on wood

The landscapes of Piero della Francesca, between candied figs and walnuts

You have probably already visited Castelluccio di Norcia and known the flowering of its meadows, discovering that they have colors similar to those used by the Renaissance painter Pietro della Francesca. Once in Urbino, we advise you to sleep in an ancient room of the SanPolo1544, knowing the history of the building which has seen the succession of historical events and the protagonists of the Italian Renaissance. With buildings from the Roman era in the foundations and very close to the Palazzo Ducale, it was the residence of the noble Malatesta family. The jurist Ser Andrea Catoni lived in this building and worked at the court of Federico da Montefeltro. He was succeeded by the Ciurellis, the Malatestas, the Malatestas and the Marinuccis. In 1777 the house passed to the nobleman Giacomo Fiorenzi Martorelli and towards the end of the 19th century it was bought by Crescentino Ruggeri. The structural system has remained unchanged since 1544, staying there you can relive the evocative atmosphere of a distant time.

Urbino, important city of the Italian Renaissance, is linked to the figure of Federico da Montefeltro, captain of fortune and patron of artists and men of letters from all over Italy. The city is home to a university founded in 1506 and its historic center is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This city steeped in art and history, full of sandstone buildings, and surrounded by terracotta walls which include Palazzo Ducale, the birthplace of the painter Raffaello Sanzio and the National Gallery of the Marche Right inside this museum you can admire The Flagellation, a masterpiece by Piero della Francesca, master of fifteenth-century Italian painting. Almost certainly painted around 1460 in Urbino, where Piero della Francesca lived for a long time, The Flagellation was perhaps commissioned by the Duke of Urbino. This panel painting has two connected scenes: three men who seem to be conversing together in a street flanked by ancient and Renaissance buildings.

There are those who think that the civilization of a people is linked to both art and food. In the Vecchia Urbino restaurant they are truly convinced. Why not add the taste of native poached pears with artisan raw ham to your Renaissance memories? Have you ever tasted cappelletti with foie gras and Montefeltro truffle? In the historic center of Urbino this is the right place. Quiet and welcoming, with a large room that housed a granary in the 1600s, the restaurant offers you the suggestion of beautiful hand-printed canvases and Renaissance chandeliers, beams of light and exposed brick. When you look out of one of its windows, you will discover that the Urbino countryside is identical to that which forms the backdrop to Piero della Francesca’s paintings.

Walking in the historic center of Urbino, perhaps after visiting the birthplace of the Renaissance painter Raffaello Sanzio, you may smell the aromas of the café. Their artisan pastry is made by merging the traditional art of confectionery with a careful selection of the raw materials used in the production of sweets, savory and pralines. I dolci di Battista combines the art of confectionery with the selection of materials. With over 30 hours of leavening, their artisanal panettone will prolong the memory of your Italian trip. Experience the marvel their handmade fig and walnut panettone weighing one kilogram, eat it with your eyes closed and savor the flavors of the Renaissance: flour, egg yolks and butter, sugar, water and salt, dark chocolate, candied figs and walnuts.


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