Parma – delis and shopping

Parma has heaps of intriguing shops.

A selection of which you’ll find on my map.

Some are very old, like Oliva Stampe Antiche at 1/D Strada Duomo which has been selling prints and old books since 1897. There’s a longer list of old shops here.

Incredibly for such a famous foodie town, there is no dedicated daily food market, although there is a market square.

On Fridays it hosts a vintage market called Mercato di Piazza Ghiaia. I got a lovely antique glass ashtray for about 10€.

There is now a Conad supermarket in what I guess was the old market building, which seems a bit of a shame.

It does have a huge choice of cheese, ham and wine though.

The only thing I remember about Parma from my visit in 2005 (pre-blogging days) are the spectacular displays of hams and Parmesan cheese in the delis. There are several around town. The best for me, or at least the visually most impressive, is La Prosciutteria at 9 Strada Luigi Carlo Farini. Video here.

La Verdi at 69/a Strada Garibaldi is run by the same people.

Cheeses that have aged for 18–24 months are known as Vecchio while cheeses with 24–36 months of aging are labelled Stravecchio. Most locals wouldn’t eat cheese that’s older than thirty months as the flavour becomes too strong.

Another shop that has lovely displays of top quality ingredients is Formaggeria Rastelli at 2E Via Copelli. The Culatello di Zibello pictured is one of Italy’s most famous salumi and is made in a small village near Parma. In addition keep an eye out for Felino, the so-called ‘prince of salumi’, also made on the outskirts of the city.

There are a few greengrocers in the streets around the market square. The biggest one is in Piazza San Bartolomeo.

Although there’s no permanent market, there is a farmers’ market every Saturday morning on Strada Imbriani, over the bridge in Oltretorrente.

There’s another every Wednesday morning on Piazzale Lubiana.

Finally, another quirky shop is Profumeria Parma Color Viola at 2 Strada della Repubblica that specialises in products made from the 19th-century Duchess of Parma’s favourite flower, many of which can be eaten as well as smelled. The famous old British sweets were named in honour of the plant but there seems to be no other connection.

And remember there are many more shops on my Google map.

And that’s everything for Parma. On to the next foodie town, Modena, next…

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