La Dolce Vita - A Culinary Trip Through Italy

When you think of Italy, the first thing that comes to mind might be food, since this country is the origin of some of the world’s best delicacies and drinks. History and tradition strongly influence Italy’s regional dishes, since the nation hasn’t always been united as one. Discover the richness of Italy’s flavors with a culinary tour through the country’s rolling hills.

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Image via Flickr by Eric@foccus

Variety by History and Seasonality by Nature

Food in Italy varies not only because of the country’s history, but also because of ingredients’ availability throughout the year. Related to the healthy Mediterranean diet, Italian cuisine relies on fresh ingredients that vary by season. Olive oil is an important essential of Italian cuisine, as are vegetables, various grains, seafood varieties, and tender meat, cooked al dente to retain nutrients. Although specific dishes depend on the region, it’s a given that risotto, pasta, and pizza are what Italians do best.

Culinary Customs and Authentic Meals

Social eating is a thing in Italy, which means locals take the time to prepare a meal and then sit together to enjoy it to the fullest. The menu is structured similarly throughout the nation. Begin with a variety of appetizers, or the antipasto; follow it with the primo, or the main source of carbs; and then start on the secondo, which is the main dish consisting of fish or meat. Satisfy your sweet tooth with dessert, known as dolce, followed by caffè and digestivi. For an authentic culinary experience, seek out some of the nation’s most popular destinations. Chose Tuscany for olive oil and wine in the countryside or beautiful Piedmont for a white truffle experience.

Go Wine Tasting in World-Famous Vineyards

There’s no place quite like Italy for wine tasting. And nowadays with effective transportation and travel comparison website, it is easy to get around the country. With its many vineyards, the Tuscan countryside is an ideal place to start for wine lovers and those new to wine tours. Visit famous Chianti, home to one of Italy’s most famous wines; head to Montalcino for a taste of the world-famous Brunello di Montalcino; or go to San Gimignano for a taste of vernaccia, considered the first Italian white wine.

Coffee Culture Like no Other

Coffee culture is rooted in Italian history, since the first coffee house opened its doors in Venice in 1629. At the end of the 19th century, the first espresso machine appeared in Turin. The caffè you’ll drink in Italy is like no other, as it’s flavorful in small cups. Cappuccino, machhiatto, and other types of coffee were all invented here. The best Italian cities to experience coffee culture include Rome, the nation’s capital and barista hub; Torino, for a taste explosion when sipping on a mix of rich dark cocoa and strong espresso known as bicern; and Naples, the birthplace of espresso.

Treat your taste buds right and place Italy at the top of your bucket list. Experience the culinary side of this country through breathtaking settings. Italy won’t disappoint when it comes to flavor, and you’ll run high on energy as you’ll double your coffee consumption.

Thank you to GoEuro for sponsoring this post.