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Ragù Bolognese, king of the city's culinary tradition

Ragù Bolognese is one of the must-eat dishes when on holiday in Bologna. A traditional sauce to be enjoyed with tagliatelle or in lasagna.

Bolognese ragù is in many ways the culinary symbol of Bologna and certainly one of the best known Italian sauces in the world. Top quality ingredients and slow cooking are the elements that make its flavour unique. The rich sauce goes perfectly with smooth tagliatelle and sublimely enriches each layer of lasagna.

A recipe handed down from generation to generation and protected by the Accademia Italiana della Cucina to guarantee continuity and respect for this Bologna speciality in Italy and worldwide.

Vital to the recipe is the choice of the cut of meat. The cartella or diaphragm of the cow is used, because of its rich, distinctive flavour. The other ingredients are pancetta, milk, broth, chopped vegetables, tomato puree and dry white wine. The sauce has to be simmered in a terracotta dish or thick aluminium pan for at least two hours from the time the tomato is added. 

It is unquestionably a high-calorie dish, but once in Bologna, we recommend you forget your waistline for the entire duration of your stay. 

You can find excellent ragù Bolognese in restaurants and trattorias in the historic centre. Order a dish of tagliatelle or baked lasagna and prepare to enjoy a truly unique sauce. Accompany your pasta with a local red wine, like cabernet sauvignon or sangiovese dei colli bolognesi from the hills around Bologna, and revel in this culinary ritual.