Sibari Rice and the goodness to be sampled in the Sibaritide area

Sibari Rice, the White Gold of Calabria
Pianta di riso

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Food and wine

Where is one of Italy's best rice varieties produced? In Calabria.

In Sibari, to be exact, a locality in the province of Cosenza, in the municipality of Cassano all'Ionio, known for its fertile plain (Sibari Plain) and for the presence of the Magna Graecia city of the same name, the remains of which can be seen in the Sibaritide National Archaeological Park.

That Sibari Rice is among the best rice varieties in Italy is attested to by experts in the sector, who have been paying attention to this excellence of Calabrian agri-food for some years now for its unique characteristics.

Let's find out together what they are and why the Sibaritide is an area waiting to be discovered.

Discovering Sibari Rice

We are in the Sibari Plain, a stone's throw from the archaeological remains of one of the most important cities of Magna Graecia, immersed in an area known since antiquity for the fertility of its fields and the healthiness of its thermal springs.

It is no coincidence, in fact, that it was in this very strip of the Calabrian Ionian Sea that first the Greeks and then the Romans founded and strenuously defended their respective cities, Sybaris and Copiae.

The fruits of this sunrise-kissed land seem to retain an authentic originality, offering those who taste them the flavour of ancient Calabrian roots.

This is the case for Sibari Rice, also known as "White Gold of Calabria", now appreciated all over the world. A special product, which derives from the cultivation of Oryza Sativa, a plant of millenary origin still widespread in the Himalayas, Africa and the Middle East.

Riso di Sibari
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What makes Sibari Rice so special?

First and foremost, the organoleptic properties deriving from the very soil where the plant grows and it reproduces over 600 hectares, in the entire Sibari Plain, i.e. the natural savouriness due to the sea salt and the particular local microclimate, elements that classify the unique Sibari Rice among the most sought-after qualities of rice in Italy.

Another element that distinguishes the supply chain is the processing of the rice in the strict sense of the word, which is done locally using artisanal and non-invasive methods (from sowing to packaging), so as to keep intact the beneficial properties and strong flavour of this exceptional rice, so different from the varieties of northern Italy.

The different types of Sibari rice satisfy all palates and they lend themselves to countless recipes, from traditional to gourmet.

They range from Carnaroli Classico, perfect in cooking and ideal for risottos, to Integrale, passing through the most prized qualities: Aromatico, which releases all the aromas of the Sibaritide, and the highly sought-after Riso Nero di Sibari, the variety richest in natural antioxidants.

Clementines of Calabria PGI and other specialities

In addition to rice, the Sibari Plain is cultivated with Clementine di Calabria PGI, another excellence of the regional food sector.

Coming "to the juice", the Clementine di Calabria (Citrus Clementina) is a hybrid citrus fruit resulting from a cross between the bitter orange and the mandarin.

A graft born by chance in the early 1900s, the work of the French missionary Clément Rodier (hence the name), who is said to have introduced it directly from Algeria.

Clementines are distinguished from other commercially available citrus fruits by their unmistakable sweetness and the absence of seeds in the flesh.

Widespread in other areas of Calabria (Gioia Tauro Plain and the Ionian strip of Reggio Calabria), the Clementines of Calabria PGI are the natural and organic ingredient of a recently produced and sold line of fruit juices.

Regione Calabria

Discovering the area between the municipalities of Cassano all'Ionio and Corigliano-Rossano also means tasting the Liquirizia di Calabria PDO and discovering its fascinating production and processing chain with a visit to the Amarelli Liquorice Museum (Rossano), at the historically most important family business.

A journey of excellence and first fruits, leaving in your mouth the bittersweet taste of a land waiting to be discovered, starting with the table.

Regione Calabria

Last update: Feb 16, 2024 10:18 AM