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Home restaurants in Italy

When it comes to good food, the Italians do it best. Famed for their cuisine, dishes vary greatly from region to region and in some cases city to city. Food is a major aspect of Italian life and the Italians love to eat a leisurely meal. Dining out in Italy in a real authentic Italian restaurant is an experience not to be taken lightly. The Italians are proud of their cuisine, but it’s necessary to understand the culture when eating in Italy to really get the best travel experience in Italy. Learning about the art of cooking and eating in Italy is essential if you’re planning on getting the most out of your Italian travels and there’s no better way to do it than spend some time with an Italian.

Traditionally, Italian menus have 5 sections, so if you’re going to dine out with your Italian friends or want to live like an Italian then going to a restaurant on an empty stomach is needed. A typical full Italian meal usually consists of an appetizer, a first course, a second course, a side dish, and of course a dessert. If you’re planning on heading out to one of Italy’s many great restaurants, give yourself a lot of time because a traditional meal can take anywhere between 2 to 3 hours or in some cases even longer. There’s the mentality that food should be enjoyed, so if you’re looking to do it the Italian way, grab your Italian friends and head out for a long leisurely Sunday dinner because this is a great opportunity for you to experience real Italian culture and have a good laugh at the same time. Drinking a good glass of wine with your meal is common, and Italians are known for their wines and wine culture. And if you’re really looking for a unique experience in Italy, hook up with a local in their home, and learn how to cook real Italian with one of our friendly personal Italian guides!

Dishes to try when in Italy include: Risotto, Minestrone, Zupa de Pesce (fish soup), and the favorite amongst all meat-eating Italians, Ossobucco, which is a tender shin of veal stewed in a tomato and red wine sauce.

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Top 10 Restaurants in all of Italy

  • Antichi Sapori in the north of Puglia, located amongst seemingly endless olive groves, serves fresh organic Italian food. Try the generous servings of antipasto plates of pecorino, fava beans, salami, and fresh ricotta.
  • Antica Trattoria serves a delicious salama da sugo, a local meat specialty. If you’re a meat lover, this typical dish served with a generous helping of potato puree is divine.
  • Etoile D’or in Catania, Sicily is located in a quaint alleyway leading to the Piazza Duomo. This small eatery is cheap and sells food 24-hours a day made from locally sourced products
  • Dau Bobba in Sardinia is somewhat expensive, but given the fact that it serves locally hand-caught tuna in such an idyllic setting makes it worthwhile. Make sure to drink the local wine passito.
  • Trattoria da Marcello in Italy’s capital is in the lively working class area. Popular amongst locals and students, their special is a typical Roman dish called pajata di agnello, otherwise known as lamb’s intestines.
  • Cocci in Parma is known for its traditional local fare and Italians from all over praise its dishes with some of the favorites being bollito misto, which is a succulent boiled meat dish.
  • Leon D’Oro is a mid-priced restaurant in the picturesque medieval village of Leonessa. Pork is their special, which is typically bound with bay leaves and grilled until well-done.
  • Zia Belledda in Cabras, Sardinia overlooks beautiful quartz colored beaches and a number of Phoenician ruins. They’re famous for their delicious seafood and trying the deep-fried squid is a must.
  • Forno Boccione in the heart of Rome offers the best Sunday morning breakfast come brunch, which is perfect after a night out. Locals rave about the decadent ricotta cake.
  • Alle Testiere in Venice is a Venetian secret. Locals love this small restaurant with its specialized menu dedicated to fresh seafood. Pair it with one of their many choices of wine and enjoy.

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Best Traditional Foods to Try Italy

  • Chicken parmigiana is a simple yet classic Italian dish that’s often eaten by locals as a sub sandwich. This deep fried chicken coated in breadcrumbs is the Italian version of fast food.
  • Fettuccine alfredo is a famous Italian dish all over the world. If you like pasta dishes with a heavier sauce, this thick noodle dish doused in cream is perfect.
  • Lasagna is synonymous with Italy, but you haven’t tasted lasagna until you’ve tried one in Italy. The layers are: ground meat, sausage, mozzarella, parmesan, and ricotta.
  • Chicken Saltimbocca is a delicious combination of chicken, prosciutto, spinach, and copious amounts of mozzarella cheese.
  • Shrimp diavolo or devil’s shrimp is a delicious Italian dish with a kick. If you like seafood and all things spicy. This dish of juicy shrimps served in a chili red sauce is recommended.