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Located in the neighbourhood of Testaccio, Pizzeria da Remo offers a food experience like no other restaurant in Rome. Although there are hundreds of pizzerias in the city that offer nice pizza, none of them quite compare to Pizzeria da Remo. Italian explorer and travel blogger Abigail Stark has been on a quest to find the best pizza in Rome and recommends Pizzeria da Remo as the best she has encountered on her travels so far. “This historic pizzeria serves consistently delicious and authentic Roman pizza, at very affordable prices," says Stark. Her idea of a perfect meal includes ordering a carafe of house wine, starters of fried zucchini flowers and Roman suppli, either a margarita or red pizza and finishing with one of their homemade desserts. Alongside the great tasting food, the staff have customer service mastered as they take care of all your requirements. "The staff are loud, welcoming and helpful, making you feel like home even if it’s your first time in Rome," praises Stark. If you ever find yourself in Rome, be sure to make a reservation and turn up with an empty stomach so you can fully enjoy this classic Roman pizzeria.
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If you are a lover of wine and ever find yourself visiting Lake Como, then Cantina Follie should be right at the top of your list. The delicious wine bar can be found in a large, old house, right in the historic centre of Tremezzo. You have the option to spend time in the wine cellar, or you can sit out on the terrace under the beautiful vineyard. Italian expert at Citalia, Lara Crowe, loves the quirky touch of the bar and the selection of local Italian wines. “It is a family run cantina that makes you feel as though you are part of the family,” says Lara. All of their produce has been grown locally and they have a wide variety of nibbles to accompany the flavoursome wine. “They serve delicious antipasto to go with the wine. The variety of cheeses and cured meats are fantastic,” Lara recommends. If you want to get a taste of all the wines that Cantina Follie have to offer, you can book a wine tasting experience that is perfect for a bright afternoon. Or if you prefer, you can pop in for a glass and some antipasto.
- Lara Crowe, Citalia Specialist
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Located down a long, narrow and bumpy country road in the centre of Salento, Le Stanzie is an Italian food lovers dream. The restaurant pride themselves on their old school farming methods and cultivating their own ingredients when cooking their delicious dishes. Paola Maggiulli, a food blogger with a passion to discover and share all things Italian, adores Le Stanzie and the history of the Pugliese food that they serve. Unique in the sense that they have no menu, the staff share the daily specials upon your arrival. "Memorable dishes for me include broad bean puree served with fried bread, braised pepper stew and home made orecchiette with a pork belly sauce," says Maggiulli. The restaurant never fails to host a memorable experience with their super friendly and knowledgeable hosts. "It is one of my favourite places to visit when I come down to Salento, it is definitely worth going off the beaten track to visit," shares Maggiulli. The setting of the beautiful ancient farmhouse makes the food experience even more memorable. Comprised of multiple sized rooms and stone staircases, you can happily get lost for an hour or two as you explore.
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Situated in Pellestrina, an island in the Venetian lagoon, De Celeste is certainly a restaurant that is located off the beaten track. Pellestrina is a beautiful and picturesque town, but also shabby as it is not a popular area for tourists to visit. Italian blogger who specialises in Italian food spots and travel destinations, Laura Teso, was won over by the atmosphere of Da Celeste when she first visited the restaurant. Although that is not to say that the food wasn’t delicious. “A romantic terrace with dinner overlooking the sea, a few boats passing by quietly, seagulls flying and then, at the sunset, the sea and sky turning purple, pink and gold,” says Teso as she describes the experience. Her favourite dish is anything that involves seafood, as local fishermen provide produce after it has been caught on the island. "You’re warned...visit in the warm season, and don't forget to book some days in advance," Teso advises. If you have plans to visit this beautiful island during your trip, Da Celeste should be at the top of your restaurants-to-visit list.
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The island of Capri may not be undiscovered, but always full of surprises. However, set apart from the designer shops, busy atmosphere and celebrity sightings, you will find a beautiful restaurant called Michel’angelo. Located on a long, narrow lane next to the island’s public park, it is the perfect restaurant for those who visit Capri and want to discover a different and quieter side to the island. Traveller, beach girl and information curator Gillian McGuire adores Michel’angelo for its relaxed and fine dining feel. “Michel’angelo’s has that quiet extra touch that makes a meal here an experience in authentic Caprese hospitality,” shares McGuire. The couple who run the restaurant import their ingredients from the mainland, as well as having their own wine that is grown and bottled in Naples. “They have the freshest mozzarella you will ever taste and locally caught pezzogna, which is cooked in salt and expertly filleted at your table,” explains McGuire. Michel’angelo is open all year round and is also worth an off-season island visit if you are looking for a beautiful experience.
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It is very difficult to visit Italy during the warm season and not find yourself wandering over to one of their delicious gelato bars. You can buy gelato from anywhere in Italy, but the taste at Gelateria Mirkoz is unbeatable. If you happen to visit Lake Garda and the beautiful port of Sirmione while craving some ice cream, Gelateria Mirkoz should be the first gelato place that you try. Citalia specialist, Lucia Burleston, can’t avoid the gelato bar when she is in the area. “The variety of flavours is incredible to see all lined up, as well as the freshness of the ice cream,” shares Lucia. Gelateria Mirkoz provides both a sit in and takeaway experience for their customers, with a seated area in the back. However, people often opt to wander off and enjoy the lake views with their ice cream. “The pistachio and vanilla flavours are the best, especially if you have it in a waffle cone,” Lucia recommends. The locals refer to Gelateria Mirkoz as the best ice cream in Lake Garda, so if you are ever in the area, be sure to visit and pick up a cone or two.
- Lucia Burleston, Citalia Specialist
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Found on the waterfront in the picturesque fishing village of Scilla, Lido Onda Azzurra is a restaurant that provides exceptional food and service. The town is full of tiny streets, lined with old stone properties and flower pots hanging off buildings. If you travel through the mountains in Scilla, you will find the restuarant located off of a little driveway. Authors of the food blog Nonna’s Way, Anna Romano and Angela DeSalvo, consider the restaurant to be their favourite for miles around. “The location is absolutely stunning. A private cove with pristine water, it feels like a little piece of paradise,” they share. Lido Onda Azzurra have a number of beautiful dishes on the menu, ranging from pasta with seafood to antipasto and swordfish. "The mussels were to die for, I ate my entire plate. The pasta was so fresh and everything tasted so good," recommend Romano and DeSalvo. If you are on the lookout for amazing food at a great price and a private little beach to eat your meal at, Lido Onda Azzurra will provide everything you need and more.
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You get café after café in Italy, but there is simply no place that compares to the delightful Bianco Latte. Located near the centre of Milan, the café is tucked away from the hustle and bustle of the tourist-filled area. It is a family run, Italian café that shares the values of home life with their delicious, homemade food. From the outside, Bianco Latte looks more like a shop than somewhere that you can sit down and enjoy a meal, but don’t be fooled by its exterior. With lots of delicious options on the menu to choose from, there is no doubt that you will be spoilt for choice. Citalia specialist, Lynn Watts, loves visiting Bianco Latte when she is in the area. “I had the chicken salad, which was very filling and delicious. I also had one of their ice creams for dessert and it was fantastic,” she shares. It is the perfect place to visit for a meal that will not only satisfy you, but also provide you with a welcoming feeling. If you are planning to visit Milan, make sure you have an empty stomach and a bit of time on your hands, as it does get busy. Rest assured, Bianco Latte’s food is certainly worth the wait.
- Lynn Watts, Citalia Specialist
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Although it is located right in the heart of Rome, Gianni e Paola Formaggi al Cisternino really is a hidden gem that sells a delicious variety of cheeses. Situated down a little side street, with an inconspicuous shop front, visitors often tend to walk past the store without realising what is inside. For Sian Lloyd, author of Italian travel blog The Roman Foodie, the building is a local cheese shop of dreams, run by a delightful Italian couple called Gianni and Paola. The owners are lovers of cheese themselves and always seem over the moon to see you. "Being right by the famous piazza, Campo de Fiori, it's amazing how many people don't know about the store," explains Lloyd. The family environment makes you feel right at home, and the shop itself is beautiful. "The little place is filled with a big selection of cheeses, as well as other local products," shares Lloyd. If you are head over heels in love with cheese and ever find yourself wondering the streets of Rome, be sure to make your way to the delightful Gianni e Paola Formaggi al Cisternino.
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Known for tasty cuisine and vibrant scenery, Italy is one of the most beautiful countries in the world. Born on the Amalfi Coast, Citalia’s favourite Italian chef and brand ambassador Gennaro Contaldo, is perfectly positioned to highlight the hidden gems of his homeland. From the freshest mozzarella to the finest vintage wines, Gennaro shares his unmissable destinations for splendid food and produce.
“Tucked away in the beautiful Umbrian countryside, not far from Assisi, is my friend Carlo’s family-run truffle emporium, San Pietro a Pettine. His nearby restaurant should be on every gourmet’s bucket list for mouth-watering truffle delicacies. You may even get to meet his family, including his clever truffle-hunting dog!”View Map
“Not far from Alba and close to Bra, headquarters of the Slow Food Society, is the pretty town of Pollenzo. Its once red-bricked castle has been turned into the most famous gastronomic centre in Europe, housing the University of Gastronomic Sciences. For wine enthusiasts, a visit to the Banco del Vino – a fascinating wine cellar home to Italy’s rarest and finest vintages – is a must. Join a tour where experts will guide you through wine tasting sessions!”View Map
“The Gargano coast is lined with pretty beach resorts and one of my favourites is Vieste, perfectly perched atop the cliffs overlooking sandy beaches. I love a walk in the quaint magical alleyways of the old town. But don’t leave the area until you’ve visited one of the Trabucco restaurants along the coast. These typical wooden fishing platforms are not fancy establishments but offer the best in freshly caught fish – surely an experience you can’t miss in this unspoilt, picturesque coastal area.”View Map
"Head south from the Amalfi Coast, and as you enter the Cilento region you’ll find one of my favourite cheese producers, Caseificio Di Lascio. Just beside the factory, you can visit their deli selling all sorts of regional specialities, including their renowned bufala mozzarella. This is the freshest and best you will taste and if you ask nicely, they may invite you to see how mozzarella is made. When my girls were younger, they loved it!”View Map
“If you’re in Tuscany, then a trip to Antica Maccelleria Cecchini to see this boutique butcher’s shop is a must. Located in the small, charming town of Panzano in Chianti, Dario’s fame and excellent Fiorentina steak has made news headlines! You can book a masterclass with the maestro himself or you can enjoy his different cuts of meat at a choice of his restaurants nearby.”View Map
"For good home cooking along the coast and a stunning view of Minori as the sun goes down, the trek to family-run Villa Maria, is well worth it. They don’t have many tables, so it’s wise to book."View Map
“In my home village of Minori...There is family-run Gambardella, where cakes and biscuits are made in the back. When I’m there, I often join them in the kitchen and then relax in the café’s garden with an espresso while they wrap my pastries to take away.”