A Nivarata

A Nivarata is the festival of the Sicilian Slush in Acireale. The name of the event in one word encompasses the history and origins of the traditional process of the Sicilian Slush, which has its roots in the Arab domination. In fact, the Sicilian Slush is born long before the modern freezers and refrigerators, thanks to the so called Nivaroli who collected snowpozzetto during the winter in the caves of Etna, in the Hyblaean and Peloritan Mountains and kept it iced throughout the year. During the summer the Nivaroli took it into the valley to the sea. Initially it was consumed directly preparing the “rattata” with ice crumbs and mixed with lemon juice or syrup. Later on, refining the technique, it has been used as a refrigerant for the production of slush and ice cream. The snow, mixed with salt, was placed in a tank in which a zinc container was immersed. Inside of it was placed a preparation that was frozen by subtraction of heat. In order to avoid the formation of ice crystals separating water from the other ingredients, they needed to stir continuously with the handle above the container. Visiting the festival, which this year was held from the 13th to the 16th of June, you could taste dozens of different flavours of Slush in addition to the timeless classic lemon and almond flavours. In the main streets of Acireale, among its baroque palaces, there were many entertainments, artistic, cultural and recreational activities, to brighten the stay of visitors, between a tasting and the other in the stands set up. Consulting the official website of the event you will be informed about the upcoming events in advance. If you go to Acireale do not forget to take a break in one of the many bars where you can sit at a table with a good and refreshing Slush, available in all Seasons.

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