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Mar 15, 2012 05:33 PM

Restaurants in Verona?

Looking forward to suggestions, thanks! Prefer lively fun atmosphere

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  1. In past years, I have been in the area during the Verona Wine Expo. We could not get a room in Soave 13 miles away, let alone a restaurant reservation. I think the wineries book this stuff a year or more in advance. My wife and I really like the Verona area and were there just a week and a half ago. We really enjoyed Trattoria Al Calmiere, one of the city's most traditional restaurants, where they cook over an open fire. Probably, this is not what you are looking for.

    1. We absolutely loved Osteria de Fontanina. Very special place for a slow romantic dinner. Gorgeous dining room and lovely food.

      1 Reply
      1. re: galka

        I've had a good meal at Osteria de Fontanina, but they were out of the stinco on their menu that I especially wanted. Once, I really had fun with the owner of Trattori Tre Marchetti when ordering my wine. He searched all over the restaurant and then his wine cellar for my selection, but couldn't find it. He made up for it with a really good bottle that he chose for us.

        1. Fontanina has a gem of a winelist, lots of decent value good stuff if I can recall correctly. Don't think it has a 'lively fun atmosphere' but certainly has an interesting decor and good service (food is pretty good too).

          1 Reply
          1. I hope is not too late...

            All the restaurants suggested are great, but for a more lively atmosphere and a more authentic experience I'd personally go to:

            Osteria al Duomo, via Duomo 7: a true simple osteria, meaning great food, great wines, low prices, full of locals. Their bigoli al ragu d'asino are amazing.

            La vecchia fontanina (not to be confused with the one michelin star "la fontanina"), piazzetta chiavica 5: a simple trattoria with great food, tables on the patio outside, very reasonable prices and steps away from piazza erbe, the most lively get together in town.

            Alcova del frate, via Ponte Pietra 19: small enoteca, great wines, great food, small and cozy. One of my favourite for a dinner out with my girlfriend, nice but not pretentious.

            Osteria del Bugiardo, Corso Porta Borsari 17: perfect for aperitivo (drinks before dinner) they have great food too, usually it's literally packed with people from 7PM until midnight but it's a perfect place to enjoy a nice glass of wine while eating some crostini or bruschette standing and watching people around you.

            Pizzeria Du De Cope, galleria Pellicciai 10: personally one of the best pizza in the centro storico, on the small side but top ingredients and the place has always a nice vibe, especially during the weekend. It's a little more expensive than other pizzerie but for me it's worth it (we're talking about 13/15 euros rather than 10/12 euros for a normal pizza).

            Pizzeria da Salvatore, piazza san Tommaso 6: the best pizza, right outside the centro storico, on the other side of the river, if I remember well they don't accept reservation.. And during the weekend you always have to wait at least 10/15 min..

            Bar Casa Mazzanti, piazza delle Erbe 32: the cool spot in the middle of the square where all the young people (20-35) meet in Verona. Pricey, pretentious menu, everything is a little more expensive than all the other bars around, but it's fancy and you're right in the middle of it. Personally I don't like it but if you're looking for a lively atmosphere it might work.. (I still prefer the Osteria del Bugiardo which is 80 meters away..)

            6 Replies
            1. re: alepenazzi

              I just saw your post. We will have two nights to eat in Verona, one on either end of a hiking tour in the Dolomites. My husband likes more simple food and I remember from 25 years ago, that I preferred the simpler restaurants in Verona. He does like pizza but is in love with NY style (he's Dutch but went to grad school in NY). I hope to change his mind as the pizza I had in Verona all those years ago transformed me. It had ham and artichokes and that thin crust and I've forever been looking to duplicate that taste again. I hope that if we go after the opera fans leave we won't have so much trouble getting a seat at a restaurant.

              1. re: jfk66

                We just came back from our trip to northern Italy and our meals in Verona on both ends were very good. On the basis of recommendations of Chowhounds, we ate at Al Pompiere and Trattoria di via Stella. Al Pompiere was our favorite and the salumeri made my husband, a meat man, swoon. He had the mixed plate, also on a recommendation of a prior review here and ate it all. This is a specialty of the restaurant and many people were eating it, including a large table behind us. I had a room temperature tomato soup with a cherry tomato floating in it, I hope to indicate the fresh nature and goat cheese crostini. My husband had the pork joint with mashed potatoes and I had the cod with lemon peel, also with mashed potatoes. We cleaned our plates. My husband says he is a beer guy (he is from the Netherlands and we also get migraines from red wine) but the soave we drank went down very easily. This was not the usual soave we are used to but a full bodied one that I hope we will be able to find again. It was reasonably priced, too. The meal itself was not cheap but not expensive. We didn't have room for dessert, however. After the trip, we agreed this was the best meal but we were up in South Tyrol where there is not the same kind of food.

                Stella was also good but there was a preponderance of polenta. I like polenta and ordered the osso buco special that had polenta as part of it. I picked the marinated branzino as a starter to avoid additional polenta as many of the starters also had polenta with them. As it turned out, even the fish came with polenta and the salumeri, that my husband ordered again, had it. He did enjoy the salumeri, a large one even though the waiter recommended the smaller one. He had the beef over the arugula and loved it but my osso buco was rather dull with overcooked peas. Dessert helped as I had peaches with the amaretto cookies crumbs and my husband had a huge piece of tiramisu. The pasta special was rabbit ragu and perhaps I should have had that but I had had a huge plate of pasta the night before. I would still go there again and try other dishes but Al Pompiere was better. Stella is less expensive. Other people looked happy, though.

                1. re: jfk66

                  Thank you so much for the detail write up. I share your comment on polenta; after spending large amount of time in Venice/Veneto for the past 15 years, I still can't get use to the amount of polenta served in many traditional restaurants.

                  1. re: jfk66

                    What food in the South Tyrol ("is not the same kind of food") are you referring to?

                    1. re: allende

                      The food definitely has an Austrian bent though not quite like what we had in Austria last year. There was wiener schnitzel but a lot of knodel with parmesan, rather fusion cooking. From one town to the next, the emphasis would vary from Italian to Austrian but almost everyone spoke German. The bread was delicious at breakfast, more like what we had in Austria. Pizza was ubiquitous, however. It was "noodles", not pasta.

                      1. re: jfk66

                        The Alto Adige (South Tyrol) is a big province and cannot be characterized as only one area with regard to food. An analogy would be the food of Lombardia... very different in Mantova from Pavia and very different in Pavia from Sondrio.

                        In the Alta Badia part of the province, the food is very different from what you described elsewhere in the Alto Adige . It is totally Italian in terms of food. Most everyone speaks German, but it is typically not their first language. Ladino is the first and Italian is the second.

                        As I've described at length in many other posts on this blog, pasta is ubiquitous and, for us, some of the best in northern Italy. There are no "noodles". Canederli, in many different ways, are one of the many zuppe and yes, parmigiano exists in the Alta Badia as it does in most areas of Italy. Of course, pizza exists, but is not ubiquitous on menus.