Italian cuisine is not limited to just pizza and pasta. Various regions of Italy are known for using a diverse range of ingredients to create mouthwatering dishes. However, if you’re looking for the ultimate culinary experience in Italy, where should you go? Our guide to an epicurean journey through Italy is sure to impress even the most discerning palates and earn a coveted Michelin star.
Many consider Naples to be one of the most authentic places in Italy, particularly when it comes to its cuisine and culture. One symbol of this coastal city that serves as a gateway to the popular Amalfi Coast is the humble chilli pepper, which is present in many of its dishes and adds an extra kick of flavour.
Pizza is a ubiquitous street food in Naples, with long queues forming outside some of the most renowned eateries. If you want to truly experience the city, be sure to sample some seafood dishes such as spaghetti alle vongole (clams) and deep-fried calamari pasta, accompanied by a refreshing glass of limoncello.
A visit to the Eternal City is a must-do on any trip to Italy, and since you’ll be doing a lot of walking to explore its many attractions, it’s important to fuel up with carbohydrates to keep you going. A classic Roman dish that may surprise you is carbonara, which features a light sprinkling of cheese and plenty of guanciale, or cured pork cheek, instead of the cream and bacon that you might expect.
As you wander around Rome, be sure to search for a good gelateria, as the city can get quite hot during the summer months, and what better way to cool off than with a delicious scoop of ice cream?
When it comes to food and drink, Tuscany is a top destination that won’t disappoint. The region is dotted with vineyards outside of the main cities, where chianti wine flows aplenty. While you may encounter tourist traps in some of the popular areas in Italy, there are plenty of hidden culinary gems in Tuscany waiting to be discovered.
Florence is a city that will delight all your senses, from the stunning art and architecture to the incredible flavours of its cuisine. Make sure to try the legendary sandwiches from All’Antico Vinaio, which are said to be the best in the world and attract long queues at lunchtime. Another must-try dish is bistecca alla fiorentina, a signature steak dish that pairs perfectly with a glass of chianti riserva, creating a combination that is truly divine.
Sicily’s rich history of rule from various parts of the world has created a vibrant cultural mix that has influenced its cuisine. The flavours and ingredients used in Sicilian dishes are unique and distinct from other regions in Italy. One must-try dish is pasta alla norma, which consists of aubergines and ricotta cheese and is a light yet flavourful option.
The smell of grilled sardines will tantalise your senses throughout the island, and you’ll find this fish included in dishes where you wouldn’t normally expect it. Another Sicilian speciality that you might have tasted elsewhere but is done best here is arancini, small balls of deep-fried risotto that are filled with melted mozzarella and bursting with flavour.