Rome, Florence, and Venice with a foodie 11 year-old
I will be heading to Italy with my husband and 11 year old (foodie) son in April, and would love some restaurant recommendations. We are HOPING to spend around 50 euros per person for dinner, although we will certainly splurge at least a few times, if your recommendations so move us! We are looking (of course!) for some great pizza, but also seafood, pasta, and local fare. While my husband and I enjoy wine, we are not oenophiles, so no need to worry about that. (For us, most table wine suffices in Italy). Anyone have any ideas????
In Florence , if you are an ethnic eater, then the street vendors are the best. I would recommend Il Lantini restaurant for a sit down dinner. Rome we found that the least inexpensive restaurants ( mom and pop ) were the best.
Your eleven year old will be welcome in any eating places in Venice. Except for the few very highend places such as Osteria da Fiore, Da Ivo, Quadri, Harrys Bar and the dining rooms of the luxury hotels, your budget of around 50 euros per person will be sufficient. The better places that have been recommended on this board such as Alle Testiere, Antiche Carampane, Fiaschetteria Toscana, Al Covo might stretch your budget a bit if one include wine. Keep in mind that the first two serve seafood only. The menus will have a good selection of antipasti, primi, secondi, etc. It is perfectly fine just ordering couple of courses or share. And don't miss eating at the various bacari, especially at midday or late afternoon/early evenings. There are some good pizzieras such as Nono Risorto, all'Anfora, Casa Mia, dai Tosi. Don't compare them to the Rome or Naples but good when the craving hits. No wood burning ovens allow in Venice proper. One advice is to eat Venetian food and stay away from the 'standard' Italy dishes such as Bolognese, Milanese.
I would search the board as there have been plenty of earlier posts on eating in Venice. If there are specific places that you like more information, etc, I am sure you will get some good feedback. Be aware of the weekly closing days for various places and if you are there on Easter Weekend.
Al Bottegon in Dorsoduro is also known as Cantinone Gia Schiavi, one of the best bacaro in Venice. Besides the excellent cicchetti (mostly crostini and panini) and wines, it is a most welcoming and friendly place. Closed by 8:30 in the evening, therefore, best at midday or late afternoon.
I have loads of ideas! So many in fact, that maybe you should have a look through these boards to get an idea of which places sound good in each city, since there are previous threads about that.
But in the meantime, some pizza suggestions in Rome:
Pizzeria Leoncino (great location, near Spanish Steps)
Pizzarium (stand up, take out, much talked about on this board)
But there are other places too, that your 'foodie' son will enjoy:
Perilli (traditional Roman)
Gigetto (great fried artichokes)
Taverna dei Fori Imperiali (neighborhood trattoria, with innovation)
For splurge, how about fish:
La Gensola (in Trastevere, almost only fish)
Settembrini is a bit fancier, but still relaxed. More innovative.
Pizza just isn't good there, but there are a bunch of great sandwich places:
My favorites are the tripe stands through out the city
A fun place to go might also be Lungarno 23, which features hamburgers made from Chianina beef. Excellent and different.
Antica Ristoro dei Cambi
All three very traditional, simple, great.
More of a splurge and/or innovative
Osteria Personale (maybe a bit too cutting edge, but I love it)
Hope this helps!