Visiting Veneto

As a Sicilian, it’s hard for me to admit this, but if you can only visit one region in Italy in your life then Veneto should definitely be in your top 3.

From its ruggedly beautiful and mineral-rich mountains to its storied coastal cities, Veneto cradles so much of what makes Italy Italian both geographically and culturally. For centuries its capital, Venice, steered the world’s economic, artistic, and philosophical powers. Before there was New York City, there was Venice. Artists like Titian, Bellini, and Palladio (whose signature architectural style is mimicked in the facades of the U.S. White House) redefined painting and architecture for generations. There’s usually at least one chapter in every art history textbook dedicated to the contributions of Venice’s sons.

But Veneto isn’t defined by its high-brow contributions to global culture alone—there’s plenty of fun, too. Thermal springs and warm Mediterranean sands make it one of the top (and oldest) tourist destinations in Europe. The countryside is dotted with natural spas and escapes. And perhaps the most famous party in Veneto—its annual Venetian Masquerade.

The Italian Renaissance brought the erstwhile private parties of European royalty to the people in the form of the maschera—a days-long carnival full of dancing, feasts, parades, and masked escapades. To this day, the fashions of the late Renaissance with wide, trailing skirts and puffy sleeves find their revival in the masquerade.

At Orofino, we’re keeping that tradition alive by hosting our own Venetian Masquerade as well as a suite of other events and dishes that celebrate the tastes and traditions of Veneto. But space is limited so please email me at or call 540/373-2953 to let me know if you’d like to join me and the family for any of the fun stuff happening in October.