Piggy wants to know about Italy FOOD!

Jun 5th, 2003, 12:09 PM
  #1  
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Piggy wants to know about Italy FOOD!

I admit it...I LOVE to eat! I'm a huge fan of Italian food and I'm really looking forward to my honeymoon to Rome, Amalfi Coast, and Venice in September.

What can I expect? I'm a HUGE pizza and pasta fan. Any suggestions for places that we absolutely SHOULD NOT miss?
by350 is offline  
Jun 5th, 2003, 12:13 PM
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Franco's in Sorrento (right near the train station) had the best pizza I had in Italy, hands down. It is usually filled with locals, so it has to be good!

You won't be disappointed anywhere if pizza and pasta are what you are after. I didn't have a bad meal anywhere we ate!
amyb is offline  
Jun 5th, 2003, 12:28 PM
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After more than just pizza, but I really plan to have plenty of pizza and pastas. I understand that the pizza in Italy is different than in the US. Super thin crust usually. I hate the big chunky tomato style sauce...so I hope it's not like that all over Italy.
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Jun 5th, 2003, 12:46 PM
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I'm not sure about what you mean by "big chunky tomato style sauce" but most pizzas in Italy have just a thin coat of tomato sauce (no chunks). In Rome, don't miss Pizzeria da Baffetto on Via Governo Vecchio near Piazza Navona. The pizza at Chez Black in Positano is pretty good. For pasta, Cumpa Cosima in Ravello is famous for it "Seven Pasta" sampler plate. In Rome, Trattoria Dar Pallaro has a fixed price meal for 20 Euro where you get several antipasti, a wonderful rigatoni (usually) with tomato sauce and cheese, meat, vegetables, dessert, wine and water. There is no menu, just whatever Mama Paola is fixing that day. It is near Campo dei Fiori.
Grinisa is offline  
Jun 5th, 2003, 12:54 PM
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In Venice--Pizzeria Alle Oche is very good. Calle de Tentor 1552-B (Campo San Giocomo dell'Orio)
RufusTFirefly is offline  
Jun 5th, 2003, 01:09 PM
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WOW...this is making me hungry. Keep the suggestions coming!
by350 is offline  
Jun 5th, 2003, 01:09 PM
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It is Italia--you will not have to worry--it will be hard not to find good food.
bobthenavigator is offline  
Jun 5th, 2003, 01:23 PM
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There's no comparison between most U.S. pizzas and the Italian ones

In Venice, Ae Oche is VERY good, but don't miss these (my favorite pizza places):

Pizzeria alle Zattere - Dorsoduro 795 (this is at the Zattere, right next to the Gesuati church, very easy to find). Easily my #1 choice! It is a rather small place, don't confuse it with "Da Gianni" which is also on the Zattere.

Pizzeria Novecento - S.Polo 900 (Campiello dei Sansoni, very close to Rialto) - very good pizza, jazz club and interesting furnishing too.

Pizzeria Ai Sportivi - Dorsoduro 3052 (Campo S.Margherita)

Pizzeria Casa Mia - Cannaregio 4430 (SS.Apostoli, Calle dell'Oca)

Pizzeria Al Giardinetto - S.Polo 2910 (Fondamenta della Frescada, near Campo S.Tom&agrave


I have personally tried all of these many times, you can't go wrong with any of them
venexiano is offline  
Jun 5th, 2003, 01:35 PM
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Warning this is not a helpful comment, and the only Pizzas that I have had in Italy were in Venice and Sicily. I thought (I'll be ridiculed for this...) that the pizza I eat in New York City is way better. Especially at a brick oven place in Brooklyn that I go to. I was brought by a local to the "best" pizzeria in Palermo and found it to be dull and undercooked. My opinion of the pizza in Venice may be skewed because almost all the food that I had in 3 days there sucked except for one meal. Sorry, I just had to share. Obviously it's a matter of personal opinion.
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Jun 5th, 2003, 01:45 PM
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Nothing wrong with negative opinions. I'd love to hear from people that can tell me places to stay AWAY from too.
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Jun 5th, 2003, 01:50 PM
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Bnice,
I just returned from italy and I have a simmilar comment. I liked the Pizza in italy very much but I was not blown away, except by this little street food stand in San Gimgiono. The other pizzas I ate were good but nothing to get excited about. my favorite NY pizza is this little brick wall place in chinatown/little Italy NY. my all time favorite is Lou Malnatis in Chicago(where I live) but I knew I would not get Chicago Style pizza in Italy, so that doesn't count.

I also thought that I had some unbelivable food in italy - but I also had some unremarkable food as well. SO you really have to do research on the resturants. - do't go to touristy places they pre cook the past then just heat it up in hot water, then serve, Some places there really suck especially in high tourist traffic areas.
dgruzew is offline  
Jun 5th, 2003, 01:57 PM
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Hi all,

I recall my first trip to Venice when I was very disappointed in the pizza - not at all what one used to get in NY. (You may infer that I am no longer a spring rooster.)

OTOH, once you realize that Italian-American cooking is not Italian cooking, you can appreciate why Italy is what it is.
ira is offline  
Jun 5th, 2003, 03:14 PM
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It was funny but all the other real Italian food that I ate in Sicily was much more tasty than the Italian-American counterparts. It was just the pizza that I wasn't impressed with. By the way dgruzew, check out Grimaldi's in Brooklyn- it's one stop out of the Wall Street area and it's AMAZING!!!
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Jun 5th, 2003, 03:26 PM
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Hate to be one of the dissenters becuz y'all know how much I loved Rome and the Amalfi Coast, but whoever said you can't get a bad meal in Rome...WRONG!!! The first couple of dinners were at restaurants recommended here, and I was starting to wonder about the taste buds of some of you. The same or similar pasta dishes I've had in the better Italian restaurants of LA seemed much better. I don't want to get into specifics to justify my opinion, so suffice it to say that food is a personal, much-varied subject. The pizzas were fabulous IMO!!!

We were so glad we saved the best for our last night in Rome...La Tartaruga...thank you Elaine! It restored the faith the girls had in my planning, which was taking serious blows from prior expensive, mediocre restaurants, which we would walk out of with me fending off complaints until I could locate the nearest gelateria! Back to La Tartaruga--a terrific establishment that deserves all the high marks it gets here.

Agree with others' remarks about Cumpa Cosima in Ravello. Pizza, pasta and secondi were good, and it turned out to be our most inexpensive dinner! As for Capri, I didn't research any restaurants so the girls jumped at the first one with a charming waiter suckering them in before I could stop them. Service was very good but the food was the worst meal I had in Italy! Obviously, my best-laid plans left a lot to be desired of. I'll remember to research restaurants more next time instead of winging it!!!
bluefan is offline  
Jun 5th, 2003, 03:41 PM
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Bnice, I certainly won't ridicule you for your pizza preference. While I didn't dislike any pizzas I had in Italy, I just didn't like them as much as those I've had right here in Seattle. Arguing about which country has the "best" pizza can be fun, but ultimately pointless; it's all about personal preference.
capo is offline  
Jun 5th, 2003, 04:21 PM
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I've heard/read repeatedly that Italian pizza varies by region, with the best pizza around Naples. Roman pizza tends to have a thinner, crisper crust than some other regions.

On the whole, I didn't have a bad meal on my last trip to Rome, but then again none of them were anything really extraordinary. I found the pizza acceptable but a little flat; I wished they had the shaker jars of oregano that American pizzerias have, so I could add some flavor.

One of the nice things about Italy is the weather is usually so nice that many restaurants have outdoor seating, so you can "scope out" the food before choosing a restaurant. I also checked the size of the crowd; if one restaurant was half-empty while one a block away was full, I was willing to guess which one had the better food!
Linda0515 is offline  
Jun 5th, 2003, 04:25 PM
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One more thing--if you're a big fan of pizza toppings and adventurous, Italian pizzerias have far more pizza toppings than American pizzerias. Things like zucchini, eggplant, and seafood are very common. Most places don't have "build your own" combinations; instead, they'll offer about a dozen different combinations of toppings. At some places, every pizza on the menu has some kind of interesting topping (there's no "plain" pizza). I think that's why the tomato sauce is a little flat--so it doesn't take away from the taste of the toppings. If you want what Americans call a plain cheese pizza, that's a pizza margherita. The only other name I recall is pizza neopolitan, which is with anchovies.
Linda0515 is offline  
Jun 5th, 2003, 04:33 PM
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The only thing I can say about eating out while traveling in general is this: find out where the locals eat & that will probably always be your best meal. I went to a highly touted Venice restaurant that I had read about, and it was nothing great at all. If I had just stopped off at the rinky dink place on the way that was full of locals I probably would have had a better and cheaper meal. Please stay away from the menu turistico's also.
Bnice is offline  
Jun 5th, 2003, 04:49 PM
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Naples gets my vote. Try Bellinies in the old town. Magnifico
derrinraw is offline  
Jun 5th, 2003, 04:56 PM
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Didn't love the pizza- but a huge fan of the seafood platter in Venice. A big platter with a whole fish, calamari ect lightly coated with batter. Was a little taken back when it was brought to the table but dug in and still dream about it today! Don't forget the gelato- coconut and pistachio(sp?) that I ordered by mistake(thought it was vanilla and mint chip)gets my vote for the best "ice cream" I ever tasted.
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