- On 4 December, 2017
The Market in Piazza
In early December this year, Siena’s Piazza del Campo saw the 10th edition of “il Mercato nel Campo”, a market of local culinary delights and hand-made crafts to celebrate the upcoming festivities. The city’s civic square was decorated with 150 stalls throughout the week end with products arranged according to the guidelines set by the city’s authorities back in fourteenth century: an authentic market where the local agricultural and handicraft products take centre-stage, but one can also find things from beyond Siena.
Visitors could browse the stalls to find local cold cuts and cheese, olive oils, honey, saffron and herbs, and the renown sweets of the Sienese tradition: soft almond cakes known as Ricciarelli, Cantucci biscuits with almonds, Cavallucci biscuits made with aniseed. And of course the world-known Panforte fruitcake in its chocolate, almond and pepper-covered varieties. But the gastronomic section also products from all over Italy with stalls that offered fresh fruit and vegetables, fresh pasta, all sorts of sauces and jams in jars, nuts and chocolate from further afield. A whole section of the market was dedicated, within the cortile or courtyard del Podestà within the Townhall, to the tasting and purchase of wines from local wineries as well as Estates from all over Italy: Vinarte. A unique opportunity to indulge in a glass of wine under the city’s tower, while listening to musical and artistic performances.
For lovers of artistic and old objects, the handicraft section of the market offered stalls selling antiques for all tastes, hand-bound books, objects in glass and wrought iron, and jewelry made from gems, silver and other materials. Wool-weavers, tool sharpeners and furniture restorers working on-site really gave the locals and visitors alike the impression that they had taken a time-machine back to the Middle Ages. Books and hand-painted pottery as well as Christmas decorations and paraphernalia for the Nativity Scene were also on display, offering a very broad range of gift ideas.
With the Christmas holidays being just around the corner, what better place to indulge in the culinary and handicraft delights of Siena and beyond?