Molise is a region of southern Italy, mostly mountainous and without plains. It is the second smallest region in Italy after the Valle d'Aosta. The entire mountainous part of Molise is part of the great Italian mountain range of the Apennines and in particular of the southern Apennines. The most important mountain ranges are the Meta Mountains to the north bordering Lazio and Abruzzo, the Matese (Samnite Apennines) to the south with the Campania border and the Marsican Mountains to the north with the Abruzzo border.
The small territory known today is the profit of the fusion of the Count of Molise and the County of Loritello (XIII century), but excluded however large areas now Molise; for a historical period it lost its administrative identity (XIX century), but not territorial and cultural, and was aggregated to Abruzzo (1816). In 1963 it was reconstituted as an administrative entity, after the abolition of the Abruzzi and Molise region, but with a territory very different from that of the past.
Green mountains and hills, plenty of water, a small but welcoming stretch of coast. Completing this portrait of Molise, there are small ancient villages whose streets are filled with inviting aromas. And from the olive groves and the cereal fields, two precious products for the local gastronomy arrive in the Molise kitchens: extra virgin olive oil and spelled. The latter is used to make bread, pasta, soups and desserts. Pork, as well as for the production of cured meats, is used for the sauce. Homemade pasta is a central element of Molise cuisine: the most common types are cavatelli and fusilli. The coast, of just over 30 km, also offers typical dishes, among which the succulent fish soups stand out.
In Molise, festivals feed and re-propose the culture of tradition. Some of them are to be considered unique. The "chariot race" between April and May in San Martino in Pensilis, Ururi and Portocannone, the Carrese si San Pardo at the end of May in Larino, the Mysteries of Corpus Domini in Campobasso, the Traglie of Jelsi on July 26 in day of Sant'Anna, the Rodeo Pentro of Montenero Valcocchiara in Ferragosto and, on Christmas Eve, "A Ndocciata" of Agnone which, last year, illuminated Piazza San Pietro with its fires.
From the point of view of viticulture, Molise is still in search of its own identity, being up to fifty years ago also linked administratively to Abruzzo. Today the Molise wines are placed at the turn of the Abruzzese and Pugliese ones, acting as a link between the enologies of the two regions. The autochthonous black berry vine Tintilia is the expression of the rebirth of Molise viticulture.
There are no starred restaurants in this region.