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Where to eat in Rome, Venice, and Florence in May 2010

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In May my wife and I are looking forward to a 17 night, 18 day, stay in Italy. 7 nights in Rome, 3 nights in Venice, 4 nights in Florence. We're both past 50 and slim (not anorexic, just normal). I'm wondering if anyone can recommend tasty places to eat that won't break the bank. I want to forgo fancy-schmancy touristy overblow for just easy and tasty with really good wine. For example, does anyone have a suggestion for where to eat deep fried artichoke in the Jewish Ghetto in Rome? Thanks.

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  1. Thats a really broad question. You might want to begin by reading through previous posts and doing some searches for various terms like "rome", "florence", "venice", "artichoke", etc. For example, I searched artichoke and found this thread:

    http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/670201

    1. among other places, you can eat deep fried artichokes at Sora Margherita in the ghetto - its inexpensive also. they offer a better than average - house wine.

      2 Replies
      1. re: jen kalb

        as I was saying....the other day someone spotted my wife and I reading ITALY 2010 as we were having something to eat at a place here in L.A. (I know - it's hard to believe people read in L.A.) - and she mentioned a place in Rome called Macharoni. Said it was really good....I wonder if you've heard of it.

        1. re: boyfood

          its called Maccheroni and has gotten mixed reviews on this site. Do a search of this Board and you will see what folks say. then scan the reports for your destinations and you will get lots of ideas.

      2. May I just comment on your terminology? In Rome, as in many tourist destinations, the true tourist restaurants are at the low end of the spectrum, not the fancy-schmancy end. Local people have more need of fancy restaurants than tourists do, since they tend to go out on special occasions and eat at home every day. I used to get upset if I saw foie gras or caviar on a menu until I realized that the menu wasn’t aimed at me but at people who have been eating grandmother food all their lives and want something else for their anniversary dinner.

        In any case, you'll find lots of ideas here in the middle range, which is what you want.

        1 Reply
        1. re: mbfant

          I usually use the term "destination restaurant" for those places sought after by gourmet travelers. Although vast majority of tourists do not go there, those places are often filled with tourists. After all, the red Michelin book is a travel guide.