All posts tagged: food

al merca rialto

Hidden Venice with The Roman Guy

In Venice, it’s never too early for an aperitivo. Especially at the weekend, when spritz o’clock chimes at around 10am, and the campi fill with locals drinking and putting the world to rights. So it was without any qualms that Dom and I knocked back a prosecco at 11am last Saturday, in a cichetteria tucked away just off Rialto. We were on the first stop of the Hidden Venice Food Tour from The Roman Guy – a tour company that specialises in taking visitors off the beaten track, and feeding them pretty well while they’re at it. And in Venice, that’s an honourable challenge. You see, in a city with the highest ratio of restaurants to people in Italy, it can be tricky to sort the wheat from the chaff. Faced with so much choice, skipping the gloomy bacaro in favour of a well-lit restaurant a few steps from St Mark’s Square is a tempting option. But of course, it’s almost always the wrong one. Instead, just as our tour guide Rossella advised us, follow Read More

Heaven on a plate.

So, it was on wednesday the 5th August that I consumed my best meal in Italy to date. In fact, perhaps the best meal of my year, or even of my life. In fact, it makes me question why I bother eating anything else at all, when it’s all completely inferior to this little plate of heaven. So here it is: spaghetti with clams, tomatoes and this indescribably delicious sauce. Believe it or not, before coming to Italy I was a bit nervous about the whole shellfish scene. I used to look at them with distrust, because lets face it, we’ve all heard of a nightmare food poisoning story involving Great Yarmouth and some dodgy cockles. So, I ate my first mouthful with trepidation, however as soon as I tasted that saltiness combined with the warmth of the pasta and the depth of the sauce I simply fell in love. And it doesn’t stop there, after finishing my pasta another saucepan filled with elegant, ebony mussels appeared on the table. Swimming in a salty, buttery sauce they Read More

Rain, sunshine and pizza…

“Tuscany is decorated with Florence like a ring with an expensive jewel; and the town is adorned with all sorts of good things, like a virginal neck with a beautiful necklace.” – G. Dati, La sfera After reading such beautiful descriptions of Florence from my guide book, the city had an awful lot to live up to. Would it be this place of culture, art, food and architecture and would I find it to be truly – as stated by many others – ‘the most beautiful city in the world’? Well, Florence certainly offered me everything that an Italian city should offer; from gelato on every street and magnificant churches on every corner. So, let’s start from the beginning: the plane. I have talked before about my frequent run-ins with trouble at the airport. Although, to be honest it is either the airline, or more often than not me, who triggers the calamity. However, this time Mother Nature is to blame for once again reinforcing my bitterness towards flying as a mode of transport. Have Read More