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Contrade Porcupine Dinnerware From Siena

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  • DESCRIPTION
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  • Dimensions and care
  • Shipping Information

Contrade Italian Dinnerware is available in all 17 District Designs and each design is available in eight different products. The Porcupine (Istrice), for centuries has represented the "Rione dell'Istrice" during the Palio horse race. "Rione" stands for Neighborhood. The Contrade Italian Ceramics are handcrafted in Siena, Italy."

Istrice occupies the north-westernmost edge of Siena and contains the San Vincenzo e Anastasio church, home of the city's oldest surviving fresco and burial place of Pinturicchio. Traditionally, its residents were blacksmiths.

Istrice's symbol is a porcupine. Its colours are white, red, blue and black. Istrice’s adversary Contrada is the "Lupa" (She-wolf), since 1934. Allied Contradas are "Bruco", "Chiocciola", "Civetta" and "Giraffa".

Its motto is: "Sol per difesa io pungo" (I prick only for self-defense).

Istrice has the title of Contrada Sovrana (Sovereign Contrada). It was bestowed this title by the Sovereign Military Order of Malta as a result of it headquartering the order during the 14th century. The Templars Mansion is located in its territory in Via Malta.

Istrice last won the Palio in July 2008.

During the Renaissance, Italian cities were partitioned into districts or neighborhoods called Contrade to supply troops to the military. Today, the most celebrated Contrade are of Siena, where 17 Contrade, each represented by a symbol or animal, compete in the Piazza del Campo for pride and the glory of winning in a biannual horse race called the Palio di Siena, which dates back to 1656.

Italian ceramics are heirloom quality products, and can last lifetime with proper care. We have some suggestions that will preserve your majolica for years to come.


Majolica is dishwasher safe, but many people choose to hand wash their pieces as a precaution. Because majolica is a porous material, some pieces are not meant to hold liquid for a long period of time. Check for warning labels before ordering a product, as the pieces that are most notorious for "sweating" are appropriately labeled.


Majolica is sensitive to extreme temperatures, specifically boiling or freezing liquids. Pouring water with a rolling boil directly into a teapot, for example, may lead to breakage. To avoid this, temper the object. The industry standard is 620 degrees Celsius (1,148 degrees Fahrenheit). Quench the glass to cool it.


Crazing is common in well used majolica. The tiny cracks in the glaze do not affect the functionality of your majolica.


Majolica hand-crafted products should not be microwaved, as it may crack and/or break the ceramics.

UPS Ground

Flat shipping charge of $10 for each shipment of merchandise under $100.00. For orders of $100.00 or more, shipping is 10% of the order total.


UPS Next Day Air

Flat shipping charge of $63 for each shipment of merchandise under $70.00. For orders of $70.00 or more, shipping is 90% of the order total.


UPS 2-Day Priority (Rush Shipping)

Flat shipping charge of $42 for each shipment of merchandise under $70.00. For orders of $70.00 or more, shipping is 60% of the order total. Note: This option is required for shipping to Alaska and Hawaii.


USPS 3-Day Priority

Flat shipping charge of $21 for each shipment of merchandise under $70.00. For orders of $70.00 or more, shipping is 30% of the order total.


International Shipments

Please contact us at customerservice@biordi.com or call us at (415) 392-8096 for quotes to ship internationally.

You will be charged a rate based on your delivery area, value and shipping preference. For items shipped via UPS, see below for information pricing information. Once the package is shipped, you will receive an email with tracking information to track your package.