The sour cherry (visciolo in Italian) is a tree originally coming from Eastern Europe and the Middle East, particularly from Armenia and Caucasus. The Roman military tribune Lucio Licino Lucullo is said to have imported the tree in Italy. He would pick a plant on his way home after the third Mithridatic War in 65 b.C. Then he would replant it in the gardens of his villa in Rome. The spread of the tree in our countryside was a lucky coincidence.
In the last century, the Amarene di Cantiano were much appreciated also by the Italian royal family. There is even a document dating back to 1928 that proves King Vittorio Emanuele II had ordered these delicious cherries from a well-known local farm. In addition, there is further documentation attesting awards and honours conferred to the Amarene di Cantiano before 1925, among which the Gold Medal at the International Fair in Paris, and the Cross of Merit at the International Fair in Milan.
The sour black cherry or amarena is a variety of wild cherry (prunus cerasus). It is dark red in colour and tastes slightly sour; the tree naturally bears fruit and grows in steep and hilly terrains. The Visciola di Cantiano is registered on the official list of the Traditional Agricultural Products of the Marche Region, published in the Italian Official Gazette.
The Visciole or Amarene di Cantiano are mainly sold in syrup.
This method of preservation is the result of a traditional technique of food processing that makes Amarene di Cantiano delicious “au naturel”, but also for ice-cream or yoghurt topping, and home-made cakes and desserts. Moreover, it is also possible to produce jam, brandy or wine from sour cherries.
The Visciole or Amarene di Cantiano find an ideal habitat in the province of Pesaro and Urbino, especially in the area of Cantiano, on the calcareous and clayey slopes of Mount Catria, where they spontaneously grow.
Four hectares of this land have been cultivated by morelloAustera company, two of them for 9 years, and two since 2015.
Soc. agricola morelloaustera
VAT 0231 7820 419
loc. San Rocco Meleta
61044 Cantiano PU Italy
Phone +39 0721 789235