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For and About Italian Americans
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Second Edition 2021

Volume 23 / Issue Two



Lidia Matticchio Bastianich, the renowned chef,   restaurateur, author, television personality and food pioneer helped introduce Americans to authentic Italian regional cuisine. She shows no sign of trading in her pots and pans for a more relaxed environment.

“You’re absolutely right,” as she reached over to pour mineral water and respond to why she is not even close to retiring. “As the years progress, my enthusiasm to do what I love doing does not digress. I just love it.”

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In Every Issue

  • Publisher’s Note
  • Letters to the Editor
  • Travel/Hidden Treasures
  • Italian Language
  • Readers’ Corner
  • Reviews
  • Wine and Spirits
  • Subscription Form
  • Advertisers’ Index

The Second Edition 2021 also includes:

• Caffe Florian: The World’s Most Famous Cafe
• New Italian Themed U.S. Postage Stamps
• Giovanni Maria Agostini: The Italian Penitente Who Roamed the Wild West
• Mission Accomplished - Advancing Women Artists Closes Operations in Florence
• Alfred Hitchcock’s Italians - How Italian Americans Got It Done for the Master of Suspense
• A Salute to Innovation in the Kitchen: Smoked Salmon Carpaccio, Zuppa Pavese, Black Ravioli, Stinco di Agnello Brasato, Torta della Nonna, Pistacchio Cheese Cake


    From Refugee to Restaurateur to TV Chef Sensation
    “One day, Julia invited me on her show and a producer suggested that maybe you should have your own show.”


    Caffè Florian
    The World’s Greatest Cafe is in Venice

    Precisely 300 years of Venetian history are found behind the long glass facade where many believe to be Italy’s most beautiful piazza, the sumptuous Piazza San Marco, in the heart of Venice. It is not surprising then that Venetians consider Caffè Florian a historical and cultural jewelry box; an extremely important piece of the city’s fascinating and complex identity.

    New Italian Theme U.S. Postage Stamps
    New Stamp Features Yogi Berra

    Among the stamps announced for 2021 by the United States Postal Service, espresso drinks and a bocce lawn game are the latest additions to Italian themes on U.S. postage stamps…The stamp presents Yogi Berra as a catcher in classic Yankee pinstripe with gap toothed smile and glove close to his chest. The illustration suggests the release of a ball and an aphorism.

    Giovanni Maria Agostini: The Italian Penitente Who Roamed the Wild West
    After living on the mountain for almost four years, Agostini returned to Las Vegas, New Mexico to recommence his wanderings. He parted with his friends to further drift away far south down the Santa Fe Trail.

    Advancing Women Artists Closes Operations in Florence
    Advancing Women Artists was founded in 2009 with a clarion call by the philanthropist, Dr. Jane Fortune, who asked at a dinner party one night, “Where are the women artists in Florence’s historic collections and why not restore their artwork to the public eye?”

    Alfred Hitchcock’s Italians:
    Italian Americans Were Often Called to Get It Done for the Master of Suspense

    One of cinema’s greatest directors, Alfred Hitchcock, relied on Italian Americans from conception to final cut for “Psycho,” “Shadow of a Doubt” and “Rope.” The director had a close and unique relationship with Italy.

    A Salute to Innovation

    An Italian must create. A block of stone awaits a carved figure from the sculptor. A wall awaits the hands of the artist to bring to life a fresco masterpiece. The blank page awaits great verses from poets and writers. What of the kitchen? A mastery of flavors awaits us, all.


    • Publisher’s Note: A Call for Unity by the Conference of Major Italian American Organizations
    • Hidden Treasures - Travel: An Excavated Embrace - The Male and Female Skeletons of Valdaro
    • Language: Agatha Christie…in Italian & English. How did she get the nickname Agatha Christie Indult?
    • Wine & Spirits: Campari Soda - Not Available in the United States…It oughta be
    • Readers' Corner: “A Life on the World’s Oceans,” by Deirdre Pirro
    • Readers' Corner: “My Time in Chiaramonte,” by Captain George Vercessi, USN (Ret.)

    And...Book Reviews in this Edition…

    Reading “I Vicere” by Susan Collina Jayne
    In a Time of Pandemic, The Best Way to Learn Italian is to Read the Best of Italian Literature
    How does “I Vicere” compare to another classic novel, also set in Sicily, “Il Gattopardo”?

    “Giuseppe: A Survival Story,” by Piero San Giorgio
    The novel is another reminder of the terrible costs of war.

    “The Romeo Club: Restless Old Men Eating Out,” by Vincent Graziano.
    Graziano is praised for writing such a fine, contemporary tale of friendship in a time of rapid and unappealing change. Long lasting attachments are life’s treasures.

    “Moments in Flight: A Memoir,” by Jo-Ann Vega
    “Moments in Flight: A Memoir” is a superlative effort by a woman with deep affections for her family and her past.

    “Vina: A Brooklyn Memoir,” by Joseph Polacco
    Brooklyn remains forever mesmerizing for its size and scope. It is a large city within a city. Added to its vitality, now, is a book that pays tribute to its native daughter.

    “Christmas in Florence,” by Joanne Fisher.
    “Christmas in Florence” is most welcomed in today’s world of governmental obsessions. People don’t want to stay inside. They want to go out, meet people and fall in love.


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: "Coach Lombardi, Italian American."
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Buy Italian Sketches:  The Faces of Modern ItalyBuy "Italian Sketches: "The Faces of Modern Italy", a new book offered exclusively by PRIMO Magazine. Written by Deirdre Pirro, a writer based in Florence whose work has been published in PRIMO, "Italian Sketches" profiles the most influential Italians of the 20 th century. The world we live in today is in many ways shaped by Italian inventors, thinkers, artists, writers, film directors and performers who perfected their ideas, crafts and innovations within the past 75 to 100 years. From Maria Montessori to Sophia Loren, from Federico Fellini to Bruno Cavalieri Ducati, to many, many others, "Italian Sketches" brings the stories of modern Italy's greatest men and women to Americans. Extensively researched, written, and edited, the book comes with original drawings from one of Italy's top illustrators. You won't read about Italy's modern icons anywhere else. "Italian Sketches" will surely inspire pride in all Italian Americans. Buy "Italian Sketches" today. Just $17.90, price includes shipping and handling.


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Rainy days are brighter when you walk under our PRIMO umbrella. Keep dry while showing the world you are proud to be an Italian American. The PRIMO umbrella tells people you are! Just $11.95; the price includes shipping and handling.

Order your PRIMO merchandise today by calling PRIMO toll free at 866-67-PRIMO (77466).

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