Ask a local: what should I do, see, and eat in Jesi, Italy?

by Gigi Griffis

Welcome back to Ask a Local, a series of posts in which I interview locals all over the world about what to see, where to go, what to eat, and how to fit in in their city or town. The following interview was originally published in my Italy guide.

Today I’m happy to introduce you to Giuseppina Ambroggio, a creative type, traveler, single mother, and superhero here to tell us all about Jesi – a Medieval town located on the floodplain and surrounded by hills.

First, tell us about you.

I was born in Jesi and have always had a strong connection with the city. I’ve worked and lived in many other places in Italy and in Germany, but for the past 24 years I’ve been back in my hometown. In my free time, I like to walk around the countryside of Jesi, to cook with friends, and to spend time with my daughter.

If someone is visiting Jesi for the first time, what do you recommend they see or do?

I recommend visiting the city center, because Jesi is a very nice Medieval town. I think that my city is full of interesting things to see like the Pinacoteca (picture gallery) of Palazzo Pianetti, the main street, and the Theater Square.

What neighborhoods or parts of town are best to stay in?

I live near the city center, but almost every part of town has something good. I like that Jesi is full of green spaces.

Let’s talk about day trips…what nearby places should everyone make sure to visit?

Portonovo and Sirolo.

Tell us about the local dishes. What should people try here?

The Italian dishes are pretty much the same around Italy, but the specific dishes of my region are a lasagna called vincisgrassi, olives all’ascolana (stuffed olives), crema fritta (fried cream), and, near the sea, many fish dishes.

What are your top three favorite bars and restaurants?

La Grotta del Frate (at Via Roma 10 in Staffolo) is very good.

What is the best way to meet locals and make friends?

Walk around the city center, especially during the weekend, and look for some good music played in the pubs in the center.

Why should people make sure to visit Jesi?

Because it is a small, precious city in the center of Italy, with arts, good food, and good wine. And because it’s not one of the big tourist cities where you can’t come in real contact with the culture of the place.

What is the best place to go take beautiful photos of the city?

Around the city, on the hills.

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