Piggy wants to know about Italy FOOD!

Jun 6th, 2003, 03:28 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 461
Pizza does not vary from region to region, it just does not exists outside Naples. Yes, there are a whole lot of pizzeria outside Naples, but eating pizza in Milano (or Rome or lorence or Venice or Palermo) is just like eating Chinese food anywhere outside China: axotic and not necessarly representative of what is eaten in China.

If you want to have a really good food expereince, eat local foods. Not just "Italian" food: Italian cuisine is much more regional (even less than regional, almost village-differentiated) than national. Do not eat pizza anywhere but in Naples and nearby places, when in Venice look for fegato alla veneta, moeche, sarde in saor and bacalà ala vicentina (actuallya Vicenza dish, but you can find it in Venice too) and so on. For isntance: italian food is worldwide known for pasta: dried, durun wheat pasta. Yet, this kind of pasta was produced and eaten only in no more than half the Italian regions until some 60 years ago (when my grandmother was a young woman in Parma, the "pasta compra" was still an exotic exception to the homemade eggs pasta). So first try to leran something about regioanl differences than eat only what is traditional of the area you are staying into: do not ask for "Carciofi alla giudia" in Amalfi, but you may have a great "genovese" in Amalfi (half ziti pasta with a meat and onion sauce;
despite the name, it is a Nepolitan and not a Genovese dish!).
Alice_Twain is offline  
Jun 6th, 2003, 05:44 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,430
We spent 12 days in Italy last year, and had only one meal that was mediocre. That was at a 'snack bar' with outdoor tables by the Coloseum. If you stick to Trattorias where the locals eat, you won't be disapointed. The pizzas in Italy are good, but different than the typical American style. Also, don't be afraid to try the house wines, they are usually quite good, and very inexpensive.
zootsi is offline  
Jun 6th, 2003, 06:38 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 1,898

In Sorrento, we just happened into a pizza restaurant and ordered a quatro formagio pizza ( 4 cheeses) -NO TOMATOW sauce at all- TO DIE FOR PIZZA- and later we found out it was the Italian equal to Pizza Huts ( ie. it was a chain) but is was wonderful- thin crust! Yummy!

In Venice- defintely try the Fried Seafood platter- ( I forget the traditional name in Italian, but it is filled with calmari,sardines( NOT the canned variety),shrimp, FABULOUS!!!

Also Venice is known for Pasta with BLACK SQUID INK- it is delicious--(just adds a little back to the sauce)..

In Rome, we ate at a fabulous grill restaurant-Giareostecca Toscana--

Plus here is Gourmet Magazines ROME restuarant guide- I have NEVER been dissappointed by their listings:

Tramonti e Muffati
Via Santa Maria
Ausiliatrice 105
Young owner Marco Berardi and his sister, Laura, are the true heirs to the grand heritage of all that is wonderful about eating in Rome ? incomparable produce served at its peak with love, knowledge, and passion.

Tram Tram
Via dei Reti 44-46
This spot, run by dedicated young folk in the rough-and-tumble San Lorenzo district, focuses on the cooking of Southern Italy.

Uno e Bino
Via degli Equi 58
This ambitious restaurant has a huge following, but several dishes fall short of their promise.

Da Lucia
Vicolo del Mattonato 2b
Lucia herself died in the 1960s, but her grandson, Renato, has gently modernized this almost 70-year-old restaurant while still preserving the country cooking of his grandmother.

Trattoria Monti
Via San Vito 13a
This satisfying trattoria features food from the Marches, the lovely, little-visited area northeast of Rome on the Adriatic.

Al Ceppo
Via Panama 2-4
This is another good Marchigiano restaurant, in the posh Parioli neighborhood.

Antonio Bassetti
Via del Governo Vecchio 18
This popular trattoria for working people recalls a time when dishes changed daily and you simply ate what was there.

Da Alfredo e Ada
Via dei Banchi Nuovi 14
Ada Ricciutelli has presided over the kitchen here since 1945, and a meal at one of her eight tables is like going to grandma's.

La Campana
Vicolo della Campana 18
This restaurant, which claims to be Rome's oldest, upholds tradition with rich fava bean soup and saltimbocca.

Perilli a Testaccio
Via Marmorata 39
Since 1911, this trattoria has used ingredients from the Testaccio market to make superb lamb, veal, and vegetable dishes.

Luna Piena
Via Luca della Robbia 15-17
Go to this restaurant, popular with young diners on a budget, for straightforward dishes such as slow-cooked chicken and braised oxtail.

Il Matriciano
Via dei Gracchi 55
This cheerful, bustling place near the Vatican prepares time-honored dishes with a vitality that sets it apart.

Via del Leone 2-4
This trattoria, a short stroll from the Spanish Steps, excels at the art of frying.

Quinzi & Gabrieli
Via delle Coppelle 5
This "fine dining" spot has a big following for its expensive fresh seafood, but the service can be comically inept.

La Pergola
Cavalieri Hilton
Via Alberto Cadlolo 101
While some appetizers are appealing at this restaurant, the most expensive in Rome, the courses that follow can be awful.

Agata e Romeo
Via Carlo Alberto 45
Although this is another fabled Roman dining spot, only two of the dishes tasted here were sensational: roasted baby suckling pig, and a gorgeous pineapple mousse.

Dar Filettaro a Santa Barbara
Largo dei Librari 88
This place, a respite from big meals in this remarkable city, is a delightful vestige of another era, when Romans would drop by for fried cod, vegetables, and a glass or two of white wine.

andy is offline  
Jun 6th, 2003, 07:20 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 434
Will be in Italy in the fall and am doing some research on FOOD! Check this restaurant site and see what you think?
<http:www.4leoni.com> If you try it and return before I leave (end of Sept) reply in Fodor and let me know what you think!
oberost is offline  
Jun 6th, 2003, 07:40 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,149
Check out Ae Oche for Pizza in Venice.
PamSF is offline  
Jun 6th, 2003, 08:07 AM
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 10
In Venice, you should try to eat seafood if you can. Corte Sconta (in Castello) is out of the way and serves utterly authentic Venetian seafood (including AMAZING pastas). Let them tell you what to order if you're adventurous that way. I've been twice during different visits and can recommend it highly. Make a reservation though.
ddempsey is offline  
Jun 6th, 2003, 08:14 AM
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 480
I just got back from Florence and Rome, and I did not see one cannoli? Why is this a regional food that they don't even know about in this part of italy? Or is it just made up by americans?
dgruzew is offline  
Jun 6th, 2003, 08:39 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 631
We ate at Da Alfredo e Ada one summer night in Rome. There are only 7-8 tables, and seating is communal style. Alfredo is now dead, but Ada is very much there, with two poeple assisting her in the tiny establishment. No outdoor dining, but the few tables are close to the door and it is left open in summer. We were seated at a table for four and shared with a young Belgian couple. Ada put carafes of wine and of water on the table, but she doesn't believe in giving diners more than one glass each. So, better not get a craving for water while drinking your wine, and vice versa! She serves two dinners, and does not ask what you want. She brings one of each to a couple. My companion & I switched, as I could never eat peas... Both dinners seemed to us like Roman comfort food. Filling, plentiful, good but not fancy. Many would-be diners were turned away ... the tables stayed full & no one was rushed off. Ada plied us with wine (from a family source - pretty good) and scared everyone nearly to death when popping corks with abandon in the small space! Cookies were served with still MORE wine after dinner...coffee too, if desired.

Our only complaint was that we wanted to wander the streets of Rome after dinner, but Ada wasn't ready to let us go when WE were ready. Though she speaks only in Italian, she carried on conversations with everyone and it was about 40 minutes after we first started trying before we were given a check. I had the impression she considered us all guests at a party for the evening! Still, we had a great time. If you aren't picky about selecting your meal, I would recommend Ada's place (near the Castel Sant'Angelo) for a casual & reasonably priced dinner in convivial surroundings.
eliztrav is offline  
Jun 6th, 2003, 09:01 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 1,776
ggruzew- cannolis were everywhere in Sicily. My guess is that a Southern Italian dessert.
AP6380 is offline  
Jun 6th, 2003, 09:25 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 461
Cannoli are a desert typical of Palermo and Trapani, not of Southern Italy, of Palermo and Trapani alone.
Alice_Twain is offline  

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