Wednesday, January 16, 2013

10 Secrets When Eating in Italy

When traveling through a Country like Italy, where most of the activities you wanna do involve food, it's important to consider a few things; however, as a tourist, it's not always easy to know which are those things and -most of the time- you end up eating just anything, anywhere. Which is not necessarily a bad thing, but, why eat well when you can eat superb? Right?

Well, if eating superb is your thing, you've come to the right place cause I'm about to share with you 10 Secrets When Eating in Italy!  

1. Two Gelato Flavors Rule. In Italy, you're entitled to 2 flavors of gelato for no extra cost and no matter where you buy it. So, before ordering, make sure you choose 2 delicious flavors to try out!

2. Avoid fake wood-oven Pizza. Italy has a law that doesn't allow Wood-burning Ovens to be on before 6pm, this means, if during the day you walk by a place that says "fresh wood-fired over pizza", sorry to break to you, but that's not fresh, it's either leftovers from the previous day or not made in a wood-burning oven.

Real Pizza

3. Sublime Tiramisú. If you wanna have the very best Tiramisú in Italy, you will find it in Rome, right outside the Vatican (in Via Leone IV, to be more exact). It's a small shop where you'd only enter by accident (like I did), but if you try their Tiramisú, you will -for sure- wanna go back! Bare in mind the secret to a good Tiramisú is in the cream and its softness; the softer it is, the better it will taste. 


4. The Best Arancini. You can stay in the same area (right outside the Vatican) on Viale Giulio Cesare and go to a place with a big red sign on top that reads "Tavola Calda" (which is an informal eatery) and is right next to a cinema called "Multisala Giulio Cesare". They have all kinds of pre-prepared food to eat there or to go and their pizza is very good but their arancini is just sublime!

5. Spot Fake Gelato. When you see gelato in a huge and incredibly colorful pile, and fruits on top of away, I repeat, run away! That is, for sure, fake gelato. Even if the sign next to it says "artisanal", trust me, if you wanna have real gelato, that won't be the place you find it.

Obviously, FAKE gelato!

This is how REAL gelato should look like.

6. Food by weight. That's right, in Italy most food is sold by weight, which may sound like an inconvenient, but it's actually quite the opposite as there is no minimum required to order. Why is this good? You see, you can order as little of 100 grams of pizza so that you can try different specialties instead of just one big slice of one. Same thing with everything else, that way, you'll be on your way to become an expert on Italian Food.

7. Supermarkets, hidden treasures. If you do CouchSurfing or B&Bs (or similar, where you can cook your own food) you should seize the chance to wonder through local super markets as I can assure you you'll find, not only delicious stuff, but also of really good quality and price -that's a triple win! Another great thing about this is the wide variety of products you can find, so whether you're a vegetarian, vegan or even a foodie, this is a spot you'll want to hit. You can even find some interesting (edible) souvenirs to bring back home.

8. The greatest Crostatina di Ricotta. When visiting small towns around Italy, if you happen to drop by Lucca (which is actually quite common, as it is very near Pisa), you'll obviously go to the San Michele in Foro Church in Downtown in (surprise!) Piazza San Michele. In the corner of this (across Via Roma), you'll find a Pasticceria that looks just like any other in Italy, however, they have really good coffee and a great assortment of pastries, but I'd strongly recommend their Crostatina di Ricotta, which is an amazing mini tart filled with sweet ricotta cheese; it is so soft and crunchy on the outside you will want to eat 10 at once!


9. Traditional Tuscan Food. Believe it or not, Italy isn't just about Pizza and Pasta, they also have traditional food that's quite unknown for the outsider. You think you won't get invited to eat at a local home? Don't worry, if you're in Florence, all you have to do is go to the Mercato Centrale (aka Mercato di San Lorenzo) and look for Nerbone, which is an Osteria that serves homemade-like food, right out of the fire you can get delish chicken stew, soup or many more dishes prepared in a way only a Nonna could.

10. The Drinks. Oh yes, "too much food and not drinks" you thought? Well, think again cause I got something you will love! There is -of course- wine, yes, and (the very best!) sparking water, yes, but that's not it. I wanna highly recommend you beer, Italian beer, of course. Splügen is a Pale Lager beer by Carlsberg Italia and as soft as it feels when you drink it, watch it, cause after the almost-1-liter bottle, you may feel a bit tipsy. The taste is really good and soft, yet quite rich so it goes well with pizza, pasta, paninis, chicken and well, pretty much anything. You can find it at any local super market for less than 1 euro. Chin, Chin!

Well, now you know, the secret's are out in the open so it's all up to you! Happy eatings and mangia bene!!

1 comment:

  1. Solo quiero regresar, comer todo eso, comprar mucho chocolate y volver a casa O_O