Turin is one of Italy’s least glamorous major cities: despite its rich cultural, sporting, political and intellectual history, it also has a reputation for being grimy, industrial and a bit drab. I suppose that when you compare it to Venice, Milan, Rome and Florence, it is understandable that Turin is regarded as a bit of an ugly duckling. But with its setting on the mighty Po River, and against the backdrop of the Alps, Turin is actually surprisingly spectacular. Moreover, the Torinesi are incredibly warm and friendly.
On my recent trip to Turin – to attend an academic workshop on The Organization, Economics and Policy of Scientific Research – I sampled the many joys of Turin (think Gianduja chocolate, wonderful vermouths, black and white truffles, and incredible red wine) as well as glimpses of the weird (almost-Soviet) suburban heartland. The following photo essay captures the flavour of that trip and the beautiful piazzi, palazzi and porticoes of Turin city plus the gastronomic delights of the Piedmont region (including the wine region of Barolo). Thanks to my wonderful friend Prof Beppe Scellato for showing me around his hometown and surrounds!