Italy is one of the best countries to eat in if you’re a foodie. And I’m not just saying that because my family is from Italy, and I’m a foodie! Who doesn’t like tucking away huge slices of Neapolitan pizza, spoonful’s of melting gelato, and sampling all the regional pasta dishes of this sensational country.
In Italy, eating is certainly a massive part of the culture and social life, but you also really need to know where to go to get the most out of your foodie experience. This article is all about going to the authentic source of the best dishes, and of course, desserts!
Sample Cotoletta alla Milanese in Lombardy
This region is close to Switzerland, Austria and France, and they have left their mark on the local food. This area is cooler and more humid than the south, and Cotoletta all Milanese is similar to an Austrian Schnitzel. Check one out at Como, Bellagio on Lake Como and select a place to eat near the waterfront.
Taste a Few Truffles in Piedmont
Truffles are a bit of special treat, but you’re on vacation, right?! And the delicious little truffles you can hunt for in Italy are well worth the effort. Head to Piedmont in fall, and you’ll be able to enjoy the truffle season as its best!
Try a Little Pesto Genovese in Genoa
Any pasta tastes amazing with pesto. And Genoa is one of the sweetest locations to try it. Just don’t eat toooo much pasta, or you’ll come back a few pounds heavier than you were expecting.
Spoon in Some Risotto all Milanese, in Milan
Risotto was born in the north of Italy, and Milan certainly serves up an exquisite one, often as a starter or as Ossobuco, with shanks of mouth-watering meat added to it. It’s a must-try meal if you travel through Milan!
Palmfuls of Parma Ham, in Parma!
Or delicate slices. But definitely in Parma, where the local cured ham is absolutely to die for. A little nibble with some local wine and olives in the late afternoon can’t be wrong.
Capicola Di Parma
Ragù with Parmigiano Reggiano in Bologna
Ragù is a tomato sauce invented some 300 years ago that is often served with plenty of meat, so it’s not vegetarian-friendly, but it certainly is a firm favorite in the Bologna region.
Slurp a Cappuccino in Northern Italy
This typical breakfast coffee is drunk by droves of Italians before 10 a.m. Never after midday!
Sip a Spritz Veneziano in Venice
This refreshing sparkling drink is made with Aperol, Campari and bubbly, fizzy water. They are truly addictive, especially on a warm afternoon by the water.
Get Your Teeth Into A Cinque Terre in Calamari
Cinque Terre is a historical area made up of five old fishing towns that are very easy on the eye. People go to experience the views and quaint charm, as well as the restaurants, which serve dishes created from the fresh catch of that same day. Unmissable.
Pick Yourself Up With an Espresso in Pisa
This after dinner drink is perfect for Pisa, where you’ll climb to the top of the famous leaning tower and do some quality all-day sightseeing. You can get an Espresso anywhere, of course, but there’s nothing like having one here.
Slice Up a Florentine Steak in Florence
This large cut of meat involves willpower, so get hungry and tuck in—possibly with someone else, so they can help you finish it!
Guzzle some Chianti in Chianti, Tuscany
Chianti the wine is produced in the Tuscany region, where it is often served in a little basket. Enjoy your bottle during the afternoon or evening in the Tuscan countryside. You might even like to rent a Tuscan farmhouse to drink it in!
Test Out The Carbonara in Rome
But only once or twice, okay? Carbonara is a creamy pasta dish served with egg, bacon and sprinkles of black pepper. Overindulging could be dangerous!
Crunch Down on Some Pizza in Naples
Napoli is the home of pizza, and the best place to indulge in a little badness. Or goodness. Yes, it’s definitely goodness.
Drizzle a Little Extra Virgin Olive Oil in Puglia
Puglia is one of the best olive oil regions, and Bari and the tiny towns around Polignano A Mare are to die for. Drizzle, drizzle.
Indulge in Some Limoncello, on the Amalfi Coast
Limoncello is the drink of the Gulf of Naples region. It’s made with some very potent lemon zest, mixed spirit and dollops of sugary goodness. Their strength can vary.
Dip a Spoon into Some Gelato in Sicily
Head to Sicily for some of the best gelato you’ve ever or will ever dip a spoon into. You’ll be able to choose from almost every flavor imaginable.
Enjoy Cannoli in Sicily
This fried pastry dessert some with some sweet, creamy ricotta. You won’t know if you’ve died and gone to heaven when you taste it.
Sample Some Seadas in Sardinia
This traditional fritter was created on the island of Sardinia. Seadas are made with fried semolina dumplings, pecorino cheese and smothered with local honey. Amazing.
Images courtesy of cyclonebill, marco_ask, Bo Valentin, amberdegrace, arnold inuyaki, larryjh1234 on Flickr and Wikipedia.