Exploring Italy’s Culinary Delights

31 March 2023
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If you’re a foodie, you likely watch shows like Somebody Feed Phil. The travelogue has inspired many South Africans to plan trips to the various countries featured on the show, with Italy being one of the most popular destinations. With its diverse regional cuisine, cooking styles, fine dining and street food, it’s no wonder why this country is so popular with foodies! 

Let’s explore some of the must-try dishes in Italy and find out which regions are known for their culinary prowess. 

Dining in Italy

Must-Try Dishes in Italy  

Italy is home to many delicious dishes that will tantalise your taste buds. From pizza and focaccia to pasta dishes such as spaghetti bolognese and lasagna, there are plenty of options to choose from when it comes to Italian food. But there are also some lesser-known dishes that are worth trying if you get the chance. For example, have you tried polenta? It’s a creamy cornmeal dish that is usually served as a side dish or as a main course with vegetables or meat.  

Dining in Italy

Another dish worth trying is arancini, which are deep-fried risotto balls filled with cheese and other ingredients such as mushrooms or peas. If it’s seafood you’re after, then look no further than Cioppino – a traditional seafood stew made with fresh fish, clams, mussels and calamari served in a light tomato broth. And don’t forget about gelato! This Italian ice cream is made using a custard base and can be found in almost every Italian city – yum!  

Regions Known for their Culinary Prowess  

When exploring Italian cuisine, it pays to know where some of the best dishes come from. In northern Italy, for instance, you can try classic dishes such as osso buco (veal shanks braised with vegetables), risotto alla milanese (rice cooked with saffron) and bistecca alla fiorentina (t-bone steak). Meanwhile, central Italy is known for its hearty soups such as ribollita (a Tuscan vegetable soup) and pappa al pomodoro (bread and tomato soup), while southern Italy offers up seafood specialties such as spaghetti alle vongole (spaghetti with clams). 

Dining in Italy

Dining in Italy

Our Top 3 Must-Try Restaurants  

If you happen to find yourself in Rome, make sure you check out these three restaurants! Osteria da Fortunata serves up wonderfully authentic food made with fresh local ingredients; Trattoria Monti offers rustic cooking in a cosy atmosphere; and La Tavernaccia da Bruno has been around since 1959 and is renowned for its tiramisu! 

Exploring Italian cuisine can be an incredibly rewarding experience – one that will leave your taste buds wanting more! Whether you’re looking for classic dishes like pizza or risotto or something more adventurous like polenta or arancini, there’s something for everyone in this gastronomic paradise! 

Dining in Italy

Dining in Italy


With its diverse regional cuisine ranging from northern specialties to southern seafood delights, there’s no shortage of delicious meals waiting to be discovered in Italy! So grab your knife and fork – and explore everything this amazing country has to offer! Bon appétit! 

Book Your Trip to Italy Today 

Take your planning to the next level and browse our trips to Italy! We have a variety of Italy holiday packages and you can always get in touch to plan something extra special. 

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