Restaurants make the great part of your Cinque Terre Experience.
People who come to the Cinque Terre are amazed by the scenery, the trails, its beaches, and mostly of all, by the GREAT FOOD!
But answering to “which are the best restaurants in Cinque Terre” is not easy.
- Our villages are so small and still a strong community where restaurants are family run (no big companies are managing here the food places). Restaurants families are often relatives, friends and from generations joined by ties and respect. Each person in our villages knows the other ones and so each one personally cares for the job he/she does and what “the other say”. It’s important keeping and growing mutual respect in our community and, so, FOOD is offered always at the very best
- We are in a National Park where nature holds the first place. On our tables we want to serve the very best of our production and natural, fresh food, always! The National Park invites restaurant owners and managers to stick to the guidelines to stay LOCAL!
- Reaching deliveries from afar is always difficult due to the geography of our area, so it’s much easier buying and serving local fish and meat, wine and oil as well.
- Serving local products naturally gives a plus to any restaurant!
- And last, but not least, WE DO LOVE SOI MUCH OUR PRODUCTS AND CULINARY TRADITIONS that we would not give up so easily!
Maybe it’s easier to start letting you know what are the recipes to look for, the traditional food that will help you to understand if a restaurant is a good one or not.
Since you’ll be in an area that attracts many tourists, you’ve to pay attention where to eat in Cinque Terre.
We live here and we’re very demanding when it comes to food and food prices — plus, you’ll probably be staying here few days, and you’ll probably not have a car to find the restaurants outside the coastline, so here is something may help you pick the right restaurants and right dishes and not miss out on some of the best that the area can offer in terms of great food.
Most of the restaurants here in Cinque Terre are family run, like Al Castello and Il Baretto in Vernazza. We feel to award the more honest ones, the owners whose philosophy is to direct but also to work all day long in their restaurants and to serve their customers as if they were guest at their houses.
Maybe you won’t find excellence in gourmet research and experimentation, no Michelin stars here (well, actually, we have a couple), but the tastes you will have the luck of finding here are authentic and original, coming from long family traditions.
And do not forget to end you meal with a Limoncino (lemon liquor not to be confused with limoncello from south of Italy regions). Otherwise you Cinque Terre meal experience will not be complete!
Here the dishes you should look for:
– Acciughe Al Tegame (Backed Anchovies) Or Fried Anchovies
– Coniglio Alla Ligure (Liguria style rabbit)
– Pesto Lasagna
– Troffie, Testaroli Or Gnocchi Al Pesto
– Ravioli alla Ligure
– Spaghetti Allo Scoglio (Sea food Spaghetti)
– Muscoli alla Marinara (Mussels)
– Stoccafisso In Umido (Cod with Potatoes)
– Cappun Magro (a kind of sea food salad)
– Triglie Fritte (Fried Fish)
– Mesciua (Bean and Chickpea Soup)
– Cima (stuffed meat)
– Spaghetti allo Scoglio (Seafod Spaghetti)
– Minestrone (Vegetable soup)
Each village has a wide and excellent selection restaurants, but let’s not forget about La Spezia, it’s a nice city just before Cinque Terre. Probably many of you changed trains here to get to the 5 Terre villages. You can easily reach the best restaurants in town in a short walk from the train station.
If you’re a real food lover, you can try one of these restaurants for lunch just after food shopping at the La Spezia open food market (Monday to Saturday from 7am to 12pm), where you can find the freshest vegetables, fruits, and locally caught fish.
But let’s make it easier for you …if you’re planning to stay in Cinque Terre just 2 or 3 nights… here are the restaurants and wine bars not to be missed in Cinque Terre.
In Vernazza: La Taverna del Capitano, Belforte, Il Baretto, Gianni Franzi, Al Castello, Da Sandro, Vulnezia, Gambero Rosso.
In Riomaggiore: A Pie’de Ma’, Rio Bistrò, Dau Cila
In Monterosso: Miki, Da Oscar, Belvedere
In Manarola: Dal Billy, Marina Piccola
In Corniglia: Cantina da Mananan
If you’re looking for something even more romantic/traditional for you…try a chef at home or cooking class!