Interviews in the historic biscuit factory

Our customers favourite Mattei products

Interviews in the historic biscuit factory

It's nice to talk - or perhaps, more accurately in this case, to write - and share stories, curiosities, and anecdotes about the Mattei biscuit factory, but this year instead we would prefer to LISTEN to comments, memories, opinions, and advice from our customers. In short, we want to know what they say about us!

So, the 2024 BLOG will be structured in a series of interviews every month with different themes and questions. We give the floor to our customers from the Prato shop, our collaborators behind the scenes, our online shop customers, friends and acquaintances, and finally also customers from the museum shop in Florence.

Here are the questions for the month of March: When I say Prato Biscuits... what is the first thing that comes to mind? Do you have a particular memory associated with our shop, or one of our products? Do you have a favourite Mattei product? Below are some of the responses from customers of the Mattei Biscuit Factory in Prato, our historic headquarters, where everything started 166 years ago!

Daniele replied: The traditional ones! The almond biscuits. My dad was a regular at this shop, and Prato biscuits were always at home. I continue the tradition! The Cantucci, the Buccellato, (the Mattei Cherry Candied Loaf), the Mantovana cakes, the toasted brioche slices that I dip in coffee and milk! Then, he adds... I am obsessed with the "Passerine" (the name of the Mattei biscuit factory brioches), a unique product, the classic brioche that you can't find in any other pastry shops

"Passerine" - Biscuit factory Antonio Mattei
"Passerine" - Biscuit factory Antonio Mattei

Since I was little, I have known Mattei biscuits, my dad used to bring them home on Sundays. Piero's memory

When I think of the Mattei Biscuit Factory! - says Mariangela"Mattonella"! ("Mattonella" is the nickname by which the Mattei Biscuit Factory is known.) I was born in Prato and on Sundays, my dad always brought home the schiacciata alla fiorentina and the Mantovana cake, which was the Sunday dessert in my house! My favourite product is the "bruciatini"! (Bruciatini, Bricioli, Scarti, Ritagli or Rotti: these are the parts that are discarded, broken biscuits, but above all the end parts of the biscuit loaves that are generally over cooked and sometimes indeed "burned")

Renzo instead tells us about his grandfather who worked at the commercial bank and how "Mattonella" products were a staple for him, and when he had his wool mill, it was a classic to give "Mattonella" biscuits as gifts. His favourite product is the candied loaf, he always sends it to his daughter and Sicilian son-in-law in Milan. Now he always buys "Passerine" which he can digest well!

Large Glacé Cherry Loaf - Biscuit factory Antonio Mattei
Large Glacé Cherry Loaf - Biscuit factory Antonio Mattei

Giovanni says Prato biscuits! And brioches with sugar.

Filippo Faldi instead tells us about his grandparents, who had a haberdashery in the centre of Prato.
He spent his afternoons there and remembers when his grandfather Bruno took him to the Mattei biscuit factory to buy the Loaf. I was not surprised at all then when asked: what is your favourite product, he replied: the Candied Loaf!

Fabio, who is a Prato adoptee, answers the question: When I think of Prato biscuits from the Mattei biscuit factory, I think of the shape, the taste they leave in your mouth, the aftertaste of the biscuits, but also the location; I cannot separate the Prato biscuit from the shop in via Ricasoli, from the bakery, from the people, from the blue colour! A lover of the Mantovana cake, but also a great consumer of toasted brioche slices.

Pan Brioche Slices - Biscuit factory Antonio Mattei
Pan Brioche Slices - Biscuit factory Antonio Mattei

Maida is a Prato native who has known us since she was little. I asked her the question and she replied: SWEETNESS! - and she laughs heartily! - Her memory from the past is linked to the festivities, when her dad brought home Mattei biscuits, but the most recent one is linked to the visit she made with school children to the Mattei biscuit factory laboratory. Maida is a teacher and she took the class to visit the Mattei biscuit factory. Her favourite products are the candied loaf and the "Brutti Buoni"!

Carmen immediately thinks of the historic shop that fills her heart, the welcome of the shop assistants, and the excellence of the products, and she adds, when I visit my son in France, I always bring Mattei products with me. A special memory is linked to the candied loaf that her dad always brought home on Sundays in the 1970s! Her favourite product is the schiacciata alla fiorentina, and the cantucci with anise which she pairs with gorgonzola as an appetizer!

Antonio says "Mattonella"!! I always drop in; I am a regular customer! for 40 years he has been buying the "Brutti Buoni" even though he says, they used to be softer!

Even Elisa says "Mattonella"! the biscuits have always been eaten on Sundays with the family!

Also for Gabriella, Prato biscuits are synonymous with "Mattonella"! Her favourite product is the Mantovana cake! Her "sweetest" memory is linked to her grandfather, who always brought home the candied loaf for festivities.

Walter immediately replies "Cantuccini" and Brutti Buoni.

Mantovana Cake - Biscuit factory Antonio Mattei
Mantovana Cake - Biscuit factory Antonio Mattei

Some customers of the Mattei Biscuit Factory online shop wrote:

The best taste ever. The little candied loaf I think should be an experience for those who have never tasted it... with Vin Santo, tea, coffee... or on its own. Absolutely delicious. Alessandra

Thank you for being there. You are part of Prato's history. Gianna

"The Mantovana Cake" A work of art!!! Spartacus

Hello everyone, you are a beautiful and radiant family. I have been eating your products for many years, I have a friend who lives in Florence and she keeps me up to date on everything. It is the first time that I order. I will continue to do so if needed, my compliments for everything. I wish you a long life and a wonderful day. Adriana

Hello, I received the package with your biscuits, and I waited to taste them all before leaving a comment as requested by you in your letter included in the package, I tasted the cantucci with pistachios, cantucci with almonds and the brutti buoni, I know you also have many other products but I will get to them later. Alessandro

I must congratulate you, excellent, very good. ‘In the blue painted Blue’ - From the success of the song Volare by Domenico Modugno to the multi-award winning Mattei Biscuit Factory where the road to success is led by the Pandolfini siblings. Prato must thank you. Antonio
We thank you Antonio for this beautiful declaration of love! (unsurprisingly you have the same name as the founder of the biscuit factory!!!) and we thank all our customers who have dedicated a few minutes of their time to the interviews! Until next month!

Letizia Pandolfini