"The challenges linked to the food system are increasingly urgent and complex. We need to identify new ways of bringing people together, simpler and more streamlined, that will make it possible to intercept everyone who is interpreting the good, clean and fair philosophy in their own way. The Slow Food communities are one response to these challenges."
- Slow Food International
Slow Food envisions a world in which all people can access and enjoy food that is good for them, good for those who grow it and good for the planet.
The movement was started by Carlo Petrini and a group of activists in the 1980s with the initial aim to defend regional traditions, good food, gastronomic pleasure and a slow pace of life. Over the last few decades, the movement has evolved to embrace the whole food sector, and the vital connections between plate, planet, people, politics and culture. Today Slow Food represents a global movement involving thousands of projects and millions of people in 160 countries.
Slow Food communities were created to work at a local level. Groups known as communities coordinate activities and organize events in cities, towns and communities around the world. There are over 1,500 Slow Food communities worldwide.
Slow Food Communities were created to have a grassroots impact at a local level, so we are officially known as a "comunità diffusa" (widespread community). This is because Cesarine is the first Slow Food Community that covers a whole country!
Our mission is to preserve the precious culinary heritage of each Italian region. As we have hosts in over 120 towns and cities throughout every region of Italy, we act local, but on a national scale. That's why we're known as a comunità diffusa.
Every day, we strive to rediscover and safeguard the "forgotten foods" of Italian cuisine, the ones you'll find in real family cookbooks. The first thing to remember is that we're not about food 'perfection', we're about real home cooking, typical food that is strongly characterised by its local culture and history. It's the food that families have been cooking for generations, that tell stories and represent the true culture of a place.
Our hosts are all passionate about preserving their local culture. They want to have the chance to keep their connection with their typical recipes alive, and the best way to do this is, of course, by cooking... And cooking is made to be shared!
If you've come across this magazine, we can be pretty sure that you're passionate about authentic Italian cuisine too. Cesarine was created to give people like you the chance to experience food just like the Italians do: at home around the dinner table. As this system turns the daily life of real people into a point of interest, it helps to make tourism culturally significant for visitors, and beneficial for the local people too.
So many travellers are seeking a real connection with Italy when they visit, so we provide a solution. Come over for lunch or dinner, learn to cook or explore the town side by side with the people who live there. Our Cesarine hosts are here to welcome you and show you their way of life, wherever you are in Italy.
Tourism is often given a bad name, and often for good reason. Sadly, tourism can have huge consequences for local people. As visitors only see the best side of a destination for a short time, it's understandable that they don't notice the negative impact that mass tourism can have on a place.
We aim to 'burst the tourist bubble' by connecting visitors with local people, to raise cultural understanding. By shining a light on lesser-known destinations and traditions, we hope travellers will be encouraged to explore off the beaten track, easing pressure on the most touristic destinations and helping smaller towns and cities to reap the positive benefits that tourism can bring to a place.
As our guests enter into homes and break bread with locals, we help different cultures to understand each other and sow the seeds of lasting friendships. Tourism can be a force for good, and we hope that our work will encourage people to travel with awareness, wherever they go.
When you book with us, not only will you taste the finest local food, but you will be helping to preserve the traditions that make Italy such a wonderful country to visit in the first place.
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If you have any questions, you can get in touch with our friendly team! We love to help.