One of my sons-in-law, Michael Pagliari, is of Italian ancestry. Both his paternal grandparents (Pagliari) and his maternal grandparents (Visocchi) hail from a little village, Belmonte Castello, in the Italian region of Lazio, some 120 kilometres southeast of Rome. Frequent holidays in their renovated holiday house in the village have stimulated a deeping interest in matters Italian.
The Pagliaris settled in Glasgow where his grandfather, Camillo Pagliari, ran the Castle Cafe at Halfway, Cardonald. His Great Uncle, Pietro Antonio Pagliari, ran the Trieste Fish Restaurant at Rutherglen Road, Hutchesontown.
What began as an attempt to document for my grand-daughter, Isobel Lucia Pagliari, a sense of her own Italian heritage, has expanded to embrace aspects of the wider contribution of Scots-Italians to Scotland’s culture. Not least of all the sadly too-fast-disappearing traditional Italian cafe.