Mar 2018 Notiziario


Notiziario March 2018

MARCH CULTURAL MEETING   On Friday March 9, the Society is sponsoring a wine tasting presented by Jonathon Will.  The presenter is from Virginia but his father lived in Europe and his mother worked for an airline so he was frequently in Europe from a young age. He developed a love for France and Italy and an interest in their wines. At age 21 he started to work in wine shops in Colorado and a few years after graduation from Colorado College decided to make a career in wine. He started a wine consulting company called ‘Vingneron’ and works with importers and distributors of what he considers the best wines. He has been training the staff at Argonaut so they can be knowledgeable in advising customers.

If you plan to attend the wine tasting, it is very important that you please contact Nick Napoli at

303-884-9145 so we can have some idea about how much wine to bring.  Grazie.

As always, the program will take place at Mount Carmel Parish Hall at 7:30 p.m. 3549 Navajo Street, Denver.  In case of inclement weather, we will send out an e-mail.  To those members with no e-mail, we encourage them to contact our president Veronica Goodrich at 303-421-1547.


FEBRUARY CULTURAL MEETING We thank Ted Borrillo for the informative presentation on the Lindbergh kidnapping case. Ted is an attorney who has read the court documents on this case and personally knew some of the people involved. He shared with us many interesting ideas about the case.

COOKING CLASSES Gisella Isidori completed the first class on Saturday, February 17 and is looking forward to the second, which will take place on March 3.   Registrants will meet at Mt, Carmel parish Hall at 9:30 to start cooking.  For this particular class, the antipasto, primo piatto, secondo piatto and dolce are associated with operatic theme, and we are planning music in the background….and a possible toast.   If you have any questions, please contact Vera Buffaloe for registration at 303-886-0608 or e-mail

MEMBERSHIP.   Please remember that the deadline for membership renewal is March 31.  Grazie.

Renewal cards for 2018 have been mailed, and we hope you will join us for another fun year at the DAS. The board is busy planning lectures, movies and parties.  Please review the card to be sure that the information is correct.  If you choose to renew using PayPal, we still need the card returned for our files.  Language students should renew their membership before the start of classes and can pay for class and membership at the same time.  Thank you, Rhonda Hopkins, Membership Chairperson.


The Dante Alighieri Society will offer a 10-week spring session of Italian language classes, beginning March 26, 2018.  The schedule for spring classes is posted on the Dante Alighieri website, and it is listed below.  Students must register and pay for classes through the website.  The classes are taught by experienced and talented bi-lingual teachers.  Each class meets for 90 minutes, once a week, at 3549 Navajo Street, Denver, in the parish offices of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Church.  Cost is $100 for members and $130 for non-members.  New members are welcome to join the Dante Alighieri Society when they register for classes.  For more information, please contact the Education Chair Suzanne Fasing at  or call 303-810-9042.  To register and pay for classes, visit the web site: The registration deadline for the spring session is March 19, 2018.

SCHOLARSHIP COMMITTEE Now that the scholarship applications are online and accessible to university and college student in our area, we await the returns.  In the meantime, preparations are being made for the annual Scholarship Luncheon.  It will again be held at the Arvada Center on May 6, 2018 at noon so mark your calendars so you have the date saved.  Reservation forms will be available in the March Notiziario so plan now on attending this always exciting event.  And also consider a donation to the Scholarship Fund! Thanks.  John Giardino, Scholarship Committee Chair.


Gisella Menni Isidori.

Born in 1934, in the Italian alps, in Bormio.  Gisella moves to Milano with her family in 1954, where meets Cristiano, whom she marries in 1956 and with whom she moves to New York City the following year.

In 1960 Gisella and Cristiano open in NY “Italian Modes”, a company specialized in the production and import of Italian hand-made sweaters. Gisella designs, organizes presentations and runway shows, cares for PR and marketing and overseas sales.

In 1972 the return to Italy, where they set up a company that continues in the fashion field. They headquarter in Baschi, a small town in Umbria, near Orvieto in the heart of the production area of handmade knitwear. From here, they continue selling their fashions to US, Canada, Europe and Italy.

But the calling to the US is still strong, and in 1984 Gisella returns to NY. The fashion business has changed, and she foresee a market opportunity in “food and travel”. She opens “Ciao Italia, Inc.” a PR firm to promote Italian regional food products and high-end tourism, in particular “agritourism” a fairly new concept of vacationing. In 1988, through the Earth-Link division, Gisella expands her knowledge through the study, research and marketing of organic products.

Back in Italy, in 1995, Gisella continues her work in the promotion of regional/specialty/gourmet products and tourism by organizing events and promotional demonstrations for Italian clients who wish to expand their export market to USA and Canada.

GisellaOn the American front, she organizes cooking classes, educational, demonstrations and regional gastronomic tours of Italy for universities, institutes and groups of amateurs searching for a different type of tourism and for a deeper knowledge of Italian traditions, culture and regional cuisine.

She is a consultant also to authors in the publication of cooking books and audio-visual programs, such as: The Four Season of Italian Cooking, author, Time Life NYC, N.Y.; The Splendid Table Minneapolis, Mi. – DV Media Inc., Vancouver, Canada.

Gisella has said if that she were to live in the United States, she would choose Denver over many other places she has visited.  The hospitality of her good friends and our mountains reminiscent of where she grew up make Colorado very dear to her.  Gisella,  you are always welcome!


Next time you head out to King Soopers, be sure to take a Dante Society King Soopers gift card with you. King Soopers offers organizations a simple way to raise money by returning 5% of grocery sales made on the card to the organization. The cards initially cost $25 but can be reloaded for any amount at checkout.  By continuing to use the cards for purchases, Dante members will provide an on-going source of income for scholarships. If you give gift cards to friends, family or charitable organizations, consider giving a Dante Society King Soopers gift card. The Dante Society cards cannot be purchased at King Soopers. The Dante Society cards must be purchased through Dante by calling Veronica Goodrich at 303-421-1547.



The Lamont School of Music is presenting Mozart’s Marriage of Figaro in Italian with English translation.  The performance will take place at The Newman Center for the Performing Arts on April 19 – 21 at 7:30 p.m., and April 22 at 2:30 p.m.  Tickets $11 - $30 Reserved Seating, or 303-871-7720.

NEWS FROM ITALY 10 reasons to visit Abruzzo, Italy's new hot destination.

Central Italy's Abruzzo has always attracted visitors thanks to its enviable snow season, but up until recently the majority were European.

Now the region, a world away from modern Italy, could be on the verge of an international tourism boom.

With incoming travel numbers on the rise in the country, visitors are increasingly searching for lesser known and undiscovered regional destinations -- and Abruzzo has it all.

This includes lakes, the Adriatic coastline, national parks, imposing mountain ranges, UNESCO heritage sites, some of the most beautiful medieval towns in the country, and an eclectic and diverse cuisine that changes from the beach to the mountains.

Many tourism operators and trailblazers are working hard to put central Italy's green region on the map. In the province of L'Aquila, Sulmona locals Katy Gorman and Susanna Iraci run the Welcome to Sulmona project, the only English guide of its kind to the area.  Beyond tips and advice, they offer a range of visitor services including a walking food tour.  "Abruzzo takes you by surprise," says Gorman.  "It represents what most people expect from an Italian vacation experience but simply cannot find in the more well-known destinations.

"In Sulmona, we like to think we are the jewel in Abruzzo's crown and perfectly located within reach of the mountains, the Adriatic coast and an enviable number of national parks and protected areas."

With no crowds, easy access from Rome and its own airport in Pescara (servicing some major Italian, UK and European cities), Abruzzo has something for everyone, from the food and wine traveler (and don't expect to pay what you would in the big cities) to the adventure and sports traveler.

Here are 10 reasons you should visit Italy's next hot destination.

Abruzzi Cruise1) Abruzzi cuisine. The cuisine therefore varies significantly from the coast, where seafood dishes are prominent, to the inland areas where legumes and meat -- especially mutton and pork -- reign supreme.

Arrosticini, thin mutton skewers, are one of its most famous dishes. Simply salted and flame-grilled, they are ordered at family dining tables in the hundreds.

Abruzzo also has a long history of pasta-making and has produced handmade spaghetti alla chitarra for more than 200 years.

This variety of egg pasta is pushed through a wooden contraption that has stainless steel guitar-like strings.

Antico Pastificio Rosetano (Via Salara 9, Roseto degli Abruzzi) is one of several historic pasta production houses in the region that have been producing the pasta since the late 1800s.

It makes the popular Verrigni brand with water from the Gran Sasso mountain ranges, and exports across Italy and beyond.

Owners Francesca Petrei Castelli and Gaetano Verrigni welcome guests for visits in which they can learn about the production process.

2) Culinary courses. Visitors to the region have the option to sign up for a cooking school or even turn their trip into a full-blown culinary one.

Boston-based chef Ezio Gentile runs three-day and even one-week long cooking vacations in Prezza, a tiny medieval town in the mountain ranges of L'Aquila province.

Prices start at $935 for three days and $2,549 for a week.

Then there's Rosaria and her mum Annabella, who run cooking classes (Cooking by Rosie) by the sea in a small town near Pescara. Here guests are taught how to make at least two types of traditional pasta, then there's the local wine to wash it down with.

Three-hour classes followed by a big lunch start at 70 euros ($81) per person and customized activities can be arranged on request.

Meanwhile Giulia Scappaticcio runs a stay-and-cook style programme at Casale Centurione Abruzzo, a country house in a lush green setting with mountain views in Manoppello in the province of Pescara.


3) World-renowned wine. Abruzzo native and founder of the Abruzzo4Foodies blog, Emiliana Dell'Arciprete says food and wine tourism is key to positioning Abruzzo as a destination of choice.

"Historically, any tourism here has been because of the national parks and for skiing in winter. So food and wine is another, and perhaps unexpected, drawcard for visitors and one which Abruzzo is slowly beginning to capitalize on."

When it comes to wine, Abruzzo is famous for its red Montepulciano d'Abruzzo, produced with the Montepulciano grape, distinct from the Sangiovese grape used to make the Tuscan Vino Nobile di Montepulciano.

The majority of the region's wine production is in Chieti province and some of the first bottles of Montepulciano that received the coveted DOC denominazione di origine controllata) quality assurance label are on display at the EnoMuseo wine museum in Tollo (Via Cesare Battisti, Tollo).

Some notable local producers that have cellar door openings include Cantina Cerretano who produce organic and vegan wine varieties (Via Ortonese, Orsogna), the Trappeto di Caprafico (Località Caprafico, 35, 66043 Casoli), who also produce award-winning extra virgin olive oil, and Villa Carrene, a family-run vineyard and cellar located a few miles from Sulmona in the medieval town of Prezza, offers wine tasting by appointment (Via San Rocco, 2/A, 67030 Prezza).

4) Idyllic beaches. Abruzzo may never have the beach reputation of the Amalfi Coast, Sicily or Sardinia, but it holds its own in terms of long stretches of sandy beach along the Adriatic.

The ones that consistently receive the Italian blue flag rating for pristine waters are in Chieti or Teramo province.

Ortona is popular with locals and boasts many beach clubs and Pineto is another resort town with sandy beaches shaded by pine trees that give it its name.

To the south, Vasto was a famous Roman fishing village and boasts a sandy stretch, and the characteristic medieval town is perched high with lovely sea views.



5) Beautiful lakes and natural springs. The natural beauty of Abruzzo rivals every region across the boot-shaped peninsula.Many of its seven picturesque lakes have nearby camp sites or accommodation options as well as water sports like rafting and canoeing.

Lake Bomba has tourist resorts in its vicinity and Lake Scanno and Barrea are some of the prettiest, encircled by mountains and winding roads on approach.

The Sorgenti del Pescara (natural reserve with crystal clear springs) by the small town of Popoli is another favorite with locals, particularly on hot summer days.     (To be continued in the next issue).


CNN - Maria Pasquale is an Italian-Australian travel and food writer based in Rome. Founder of popular lifestyle blog, her adventures can be followed on Instagram @heartrome.

tourismPompeii opens restored homes to visitors 

Italy's ancient city of Pompeii has opened three newly restored Roman houses. The Italian Minister of Culture, Dario Francheschini, inaugurated the buildings which are now open to visitors for the first time.  The flowered lararium house retains much of its original wall paintings, as well as an area intended for worship which is decorated with flying cupids and scattered flowers.  A large room overlooking the garden has mythological squares in the center of yellow panels.   Pompeii was devastated by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD. But the ash and rock preserved much of the city, providing a snapshot of life nearly 2,000 years ago. (Euronews)

Matera 2019 European Capital of Culture   The European Capital of Culture is an year-long event that celebrates the diversity of cultures in Europe.  Every year a new city becomes the European Capital of Culture, and the initiative is an opportunity to discover the cultural richness of the continent. The ambitious year-long itinerary is carefully designed by field experts and local residents, so the event is a platform for regional creativity.  Matera (Italy) is the 2019 European Capital of Culture, the contest was one of the most difficult ever, with 21 initial contenders, a number that represents the tremendous popularity of the event.  (Euronews)


The agreement between the Vatican and the Dante has been renewed once again for the year 2018. It allows us to visit the museums at a lower price and get in front of the long lines simply by presenting the Dante Society membership card. The cost to visit the Museums is 16 euros per person, and 1 euro if you decide to purchase the Art and Faith DVD on the Treasures of the Vatican. The Dante membership card may be obtained by contacting Rhonda Hopkins at 720-596-4169,, or Gianfranco Marcantonio at 303-494-3080 .

For additional privileges for Dante members while in Italy, please visit the following site:



Cultural Meetings

Mar 9

April 13


April 8 - Prima Domenica

May 6 – Scholarship Banquet


Spring 2018 Language Class Registration ends March 19, 2018
Classes Begin March 26, 2018

NOTE: Cultural meetings, movies, and cooking classes take place at Mt. Carmel Church Parish Hall, 3549 Navajo St., Denver.

Language classes are taught at Mt. Carmel Church Office.


Members working on delicious antipasti at recent cooking class.