Italy has fantastic food everywhere. We even stopped at an “Auto Grill” on the autostrada (highway) and had a great espresso and pastry. Not like our turnpike rest areas. In Italy there are several common types of places to eat and a few others in certain areas.
- Bar – A place to eat or drink. In the morning you go here for coffee and pastry, at lunch you go for sandwiches (Panini). In the evening you go for a drink and a snack. Bars are cheapest if you stand and eat. Sitting at a table costs more but allows you to relax and observe Italy and its great people.
- Tratteria – these are small owned eating cafes with great food at reasonable costs. Lunch and dinner are great. Usually Italian favorites as well as local dishes are served. The atmosphere is simple but comfortable. A version of these are Pizzeria Trattoria. These include pizzas along other dishes.
- Ristorante – These are for lunch or dinner and are nice but expensive. The atmosphere is classic and the food is great. You can also find Pizzeria Ristorante’s.
- Osteria – These places usually serve wine and simple food with limited menus.
- Enotecca – Small wine bars that allow tasting local wines (for a charge) and serve small dishes or sandwiches. These are a great way to get to know local wines.
- Rotisserie – Small restaurants that specialize in roasting meats on a spit.
- Agritourism – Usually a farm-based establishment with a B&B type hotel and food grown or raised on their farm. They sometimes have stores to buy products and take home.
Pizza is everywhere! You can have it in Trattoria’s or Ristorante’s. Always stay away from touristy places serving hamburgers and hot dogs. The food won’t be good and prices will be high. Enjoy your trip, taste Italy’s great food & wines. Sit back and smile as you watch the Italians strolling with family at lunch time or in the evening. Lunch usually ranges from 12 noon to 3 pm (shorter in the north) and dinner from 6 pm (for tourists) to 11 pm. The south of Italy eats much later than the north.
Remember Italy is the land of romance. Sit back and enjoy yourself. Do NOT go into eating establishments in Italy and be in a hurry! Use a bar if you have to eat fast. Good food takes time to prepare and serve properly.
George & Jo
- How to find great restaurants in Italy (travelblogitaly.wordpress.com)
- Uncover Italy’s Best Places to Eat, Love and Sleep! Italy Luxury Travel Experts Publish Ultimate Insider’s Guide and Capture the Soul of La Dolce Vita (prweb.com)
- Eat Like an Italian (rickzullo.com)
- First (Italian) Apartment!!!! (cierashell1.wordpress.com)
- Things about Italy that I didn’t know and now I do…. (Part 1) (kingstongirlinmilan.wordpress.com)
- First Weekend in Italy (athenalily.wordpress.com)
- Lunch hour in Italy serves up some sour economic lessons (thestar.com)
- Milano (thebeautyofdecisions.wordpress.com)
- What are Italy’s Agriturismi (travelblogitaly.wordpress.com)