During our 28-day stay in Italy, we spent time in Rome and Tuscany and enjoyed plenty of amazing food along the way. It was truly a foodie vacation. We walked for miles each day exploring so we never felt guilty because we walked off most of the calories we consumed. As Baby Boomers, over 60, we also needed a little time to put our feet up after hours of tromping over cobblestones. That’s probably why we stopped at so many restaurants and cafes. LOL
You may also enjoy this post: How to Eat like an Italian to Stay Healthy and Live Well Longer
I couldn’t get enough Italian food
Authentic Italian food is elegant, richly flavored and lighter than its American version and it’s served in reasonable portions. Still, we often split our meals not only because it was economical but because we wanted to save room for dessert. No foodie vacation to Italy is complete without trying their delectable sweet treats, even though I don’t indulge much in dessert at home. We had to sample some of their famous Gelato as well as several renditions of to die for Tiramisu.
Once you’ve tasted Italian Gelato it’s hard to go back to regular ice cream.
Then, there’s the wine
I’ve cut back on my wine consumption from one glass a day to 1-2 glasses per week. But that went by the wayside while we were in Italy. Italian wine is too sublime to set limits. When in Rome, (and certainly Tuscany) drink like a Roman!
We started our day with an Italian breakfast
The Italian owned hotels we stayed in always served up wonderful buffet breakfasts that included hard boiled and scrambled eggs, Italian cold cuts, fruit, cereal, and incredible fruit pastry tarts. It gave us the fuel to go go go!
Every morning I would sip on a cappuccino that tasted 10 times better than anything I’ve had in the States. Starbucks “Eat your heart out!” The Italians drink cappuccino in the morning but never in the afternoon.
Eating on the fly
Our hectic schedule didn’t give us time to snack between meals, which was good because I didn’t want to gain weight. For lunch, we would stop at an outdoor cafe or small eatery to relax and munch on a Panini sandwich, a piece of pizza, pasta, antipasto or Tuscan soup. Although we stopped a few times at Starbucks to use the bathroom, we NEVER ate at an American style restaurant the entire time we were there. When I travel, I like to infuse myself with the culture and the food was so good, why would I not?
A tip when you are at a restaurant in Italy
If you order a salad in Italy don’t ask for salad dressing. Salads are typically served lightly dressed with a few drops of olive oil and sometimes vinegar. That’s all you really need.
At one restaurant, Doug dared to ask for mustard to spread on his Panini sandwich and the owner of the sandwich shop looked at him like he was a space alien. At another, a server handed him a bottle of hot sauce to keep because he kept asking for it to put on his scrambled eggs.
Doug almost fainted when a server brought him shrimp that had its eyeballs bugging out. He won’t eat anything that’s looking at him.
Satisfy your sweet tooth
Everyday desserts are everywhere and they’re all so amazing. You’ll see plenty of pies and tarts made with real fruit. So yummy!
Planning a Trip to Italy?
Find hotels in Rome and Tuscany
Get the best price on a flight to Rome
- Skyscanner – Find the most affordable flight to Rome on a search engine you can trust.
Rent a car in Italy
- Auto Europe – This site offers the best auto rates in Europe.
Find great tours in Rome and Tuscany
- Food Tours Rome
- Food Tours Tuscany
- Tours by Locals – Find a local guide to take you on a private and personalized tour.
Don’t forget to buy travel insurance!
If you could go on a foodie vacation, where would you go? Please leave a comment below.