I am one of many Italians who grew up with Pandoro Melegatti.
How to forget the sensational place with the legendary Franca Valeri: “La Fortuna you know, with Melegatti it’s sweeter than ever!”.

Melegatti created Pandoro, which today is famous all over the world!
It is and will remain forever in the collective imagination of many generations, the Pandoro reminds us of Christmas, childhood, the warmth of family, the joy of being together … knowing that Melegatti will no longer be there our tables set and low our Christmas trees, they try a lot of sadness and a deep nostalgia.
The history of Pandoro dates back to the end of the 19th century, when in 1894 a certain Domenico Melegatti invented Pandoro and established the “Melegatti” brand.

The Pandoro is inspired by a Veronese tradition linked to Christmas. The old custom in fact wanted that on the night of the Vigil, the women would meet in the kitchens of the Venetian courts to make together the “levà”, a mixture of flour, milk and yeast. Domenico Melegatti part of “cam” and converts it, enriching it with butter and eggs, eliminating what he considers counterproductive to the proofing, such as almonds and sugar grains on the surface. From the completion of the dough to the finished product, they spend around 36 hours. The fermentation of more than 10 hours and the 6-7 mass cycles hinder the “homemade” production of the cake.
Therefore, Domenico Melegatti “feels the benevolent and numerous clientele of having created a new dessert”. According to the legend of the family, a child, in front of the first slice of the new cake illuminated by a ray of sun, exclaimed astonished: “it is really a golden bread!”.

The Pandoro was born as a sweet for all parties and for Sunday. The doctors, at the beginning of the century, even advised the convalescents and puerpere as light and nutritious food! Only later, with mass consumption, does it become the recurring sweet associated with Christmas. La Dolce has to be an immediate success and soon a new dimension is given to the activity of Domenico Melegatti. It is for this reason that the date of October 14, 1894 can be defined as the point of origin of the Melegatti company. Pandoro’s demand grows with the end of World War II. Italy in the 50s has a profound social transformation: from an agricultural country it becomes an industrial nation and the increase in family income takes Pandoro from the status of luxury product. The “Casa del Pandoro Melegatti” becomes a limited liability company and the first real industrial plant is opened. Thanks also to the participation in various fairs and events throughout Italy, Pandoro is known everywhere. In this period, trucks with the inscription Melegatti are also used to carry out an “attempt to sell” in the provinces near Verona. In the 1960s, Melegatti’s production was further automated by increasing volumes. The same distribution system evolves: if the privileged channel continues to be that of the confectioneries, the first supermarkets begin to emerge: Melegatti has a group of agents covering all of Italy. Since the seventies, penetration in supermarkets has increased even more thanks to advertising. In 1974, the first national advertising campaign was published in the newspapers and in 1976 Pandoro Melegatti appeared on television.

Melegatti does not use artificial flavors but Italian fresh products
The birth of Pandoro who has the creative talent of Domenico Melegatti who, in addition to having created the recipe for this product, or even established the characteristics and classic shape of a truncated cone with the eight-pointed star section. Melegatti products are made with natural yeast (also called “mother yeast”), whose processing takes approximately 24 hours to obtain an acid biomass, which is essential for the fermentation of the product. This process is essentially due to the formation of aromatic substances, typical of the enzymatic action of natural yeasts and lactic bacteria present in the Mother. Of primary importance is the selection of grains of mainly North American origin from which flour with superior quality characteristics is produced. The use of fresh eggs and butter obtained exclusively from milk cream allows to obtain a product of the highest quality. The addition of sugar, and the other noble ingredients of the recipe, are interspersed with “rest”, which allow the “natural yeast to adapt” to the dough and create the variety of flavors, aromas and structures that are the hallmark and the richness of the products. After about six hours, the dough is ready to be broken, then divided into portions and placed in the molds.

The final yeast of the dough is carried out in an environment with temperatureand humidity controlled, constantly monitored by a confectioner who knows about it and the development before cooking. The freshly baked product is subjected to a rapid cooling system, which allows the product to be brought to the packaging in just a few minutes. This technological innovation reduces the contact time of the product with the environment, thus improving its hygienic safety. After cooling some types of products are automatically transferred to the filling line, depending on the product, the dessert is completed with creams, chocolate, grains and icings. To guarantee the quality of the products, Melegatti has an internal analysis laboratory with specialized personnel that performs constant research and monitoring of raw materials, semi-finished products, finished products and packaging. The raw materials used are all of the highest quality, constantly monitored and subjected to a traceability system to guarantee the origin.

The loss of a product that you have contributed to making Italy, big and famous in the world, leaves us with a bitter taste in the mouth, from today onwards we’ll hear about Pandoro, we could not help but remember one name, that of Melegatti!

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By Maximo De Marco

Maximo De Marco began his career at an early age as a dancer, model, actor, singer, training and artistically perfecting internationally, winning a grant issued by the EEC (European Economic Community) that will lead him to study with teachers of World fame, later becoming author, director, choreographer, discographer, designer and writer, thanks to all these working experiences in the Entertainment World, today Maximo De Marco is one of the most important and internationally recognized Art Director , Nominated Art Director to Vitam by the Vatican, for the WYD and Friends of Pope Francis (World Youth Day), Official Member of the International Dance Council of UNESCO and Premio Cavallo D'Argento Rai (Italian Radio Television), Career of the Music Life Tv Awards (SKY) and of Cantagiro as best Artistic Director, Amen Prize for Literature with special mention at the International Exhibition the book of Turin in 2013 and winner of the Salerno International Film Festival in 2017 with his religious historical film "Petali di Rosa". In his career as Art Director, he has directed Televisions, Radio, Magazine, Theaters, and great Star of Music and Performing Arts, including the English Pop Star Boy George, for his World Tour in the 90s ", the winner of The Voice of Italy Sister Cristina, and other artists such as: Franco Simone, Teo Mammuccari, Fabrizio Frizzi, Antonella Ponziani, Claudia Koll...

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