On May 1st Italians take the day off to celebrate Festa dei Lavoratori, or Festa del Lavoro––Labor Day.

Many ancient customs associated with May Day come from the ancient Greek and ancient Roman festivities. Originally a celebration of spring and rebirth taking place in nature during this time of year, the day was characterized by the gathering of flowers and the fertility rite of dancing around the maypole decorated with ribbons, beads and flowers.

Fave e pecorino on May Day

Nowadays Romans honor the arrival of May with a delicious tradition: eating fresh fava beans and pecorino romano cheese. Whether lazily sprawled in a meadow dotted with daisies, or dancing at the open-air concert in Piazza San Giovanni, eating fave e pecorino is a May Day must.

We’ve packed up outr picnic hamper and chilled the wine. Buon Primo Maggio!