The Marche is located on the side of the middle Adriatic and occupies a space that extends between the Conca river in the north and the Tronto in the south; to the west the region is limited by the Umbria-Marche Apennines. It has a characteristic shape of irregular pentagon and develops mostly longitudinally from north-west to south-east. The lowlands, not detectable in percentage, are limited to a narrow coastal strip and to the part of the valleys closest to the mouth of the rivers.
Inhabited since the Paleolithic, the Marche region has never followed unitary historical events: before the control of the Romans it was inhabited mainly by the Piceni, while the Gauls were confined to the north, the Greeks to Ancona and the Umbrians to the south-west.
In the Middle Ages the region was divided between the Byzantines in the north and the Lombards in the south, until the Franks gave it to the popes. Under the dominion of the Church the free communes were born and in the Renaissance important Lords were formed. After the interlude of the French Revolution, the Marches returned to the Papal States, until they were occupied by Piedmontese troops in 1860, definitively entering the Kingdom of Italy.
That of the Marche is a confederation of kitchens. There are two aspects of local cuisine corresponding to the geographical characteristics of the region: the inland and the maritime one.
The peasant aspect of the Marche cuisine is dominated by mushrooms, the use of olives and truffles.
The main dishes of the hinterland are based on pork. On the Marche coast instead you can enjoy a large quantity of fish products. The symbolic dish is the "fish soup", interpreted differently in each port, from the red (tomato) of the Pesarese to the yellow (saffron) of the Ascoli. In use between the Conca river (Romagna border) and the Tronto river (before the Abruzzi) there is a "potacchio", deriving from the French "potage", which in this area does not designate a soup but a restricted sauce marinated in stockfish , chicken or rabbit.
The Ancona and Macerata cuisine express the unifying dish of the region: the vincisgrassi.
Viticulture has always flourished in the Marche and has given very diversified products to each other. From the top of its hills, following the descent of the Esino valley towards Jesi, overlooking the succession of vineyards in the heart of the Verdicchio area, a charming corner of the Marche where villages, abbeys and castles dominate the landscape and the eye can wander to infinity between lands and fields object of the principal poems of Leopardi.