The city of madmen and honey
Initially a Picentes settlement, then a Roman town, Matelica guards ancient secrets and places, suspended between present and past. Its historic centre winds around Corso Vittorio Emanuele, which branches off onto narrow alleyways and charming squares. The main square is Piazza Enrico Mattei, dedicated to the founder of ENI, where the town hall, civic tower, Church of the Suffrage and market loggia stand. At its centre, you can admire the octagonal 16th-century fountain: if you run around it seven times, you can receive a Patente da mattu (Madman’s Licence) from the Pro Loco association.
Don’t miss the Piermarini Theatre, the Enrico Mattei Museum and the Globo, a fascinating spherical sundial that has told local time for over 2000 years.
Matelica will satisfy even the most discerning palates. This “City of Verdicchio and Honey”, as the road signs at the town’s entrance read, produces one of Italy’s finest white wines. It pairs perfectly with local delicacies, like crescia bread stuffed with pork lard, crostini bread with liver, tagliatelle della trebbiatura pasta and rabbit in potacchio sauce. The honey can accompany local cheeses, from pecorino to ricotta, both fresh and mature.