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Feb 12, 2013 04:09 PM

Seeking Sunday Seafood Lunch in Genoa

We have enjoyed wonderful seaside Sunday lunches all over Italy and are thinking of heading over to Genoa (Genova) in a couple weeks to try to do the same there. Any recommendations for that quintessential seaside seafood restaurant that is light on fancy and long on fresh, simple seafood?

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    1. There are relatively few open restaurants in the Genoa city center on Sunday, but a couple that come to mind from our planning from our recent visit (Ive not been to either)are Da Rina, in the Genoa Old Port area, that barbarinibee speaks highly of, and Creuza da Ma, which is a bit west of the center along the Bocadasse, a fishing village that has been swallowed up in urban Genoa, and is open for Sunday lunch but not dinner.

      1. Spend another hour and drive west to Varigotti, right on the water, and eat at Muraglia Conchiglia d'Oro. By the time it takes you to get into Genova, you can be there and, for us, by far the best seafood preparations in Liguria. Nothing comes close. Every restaurateur that we've sent there, whether Italian, British or American, has simply gone wild over the food, preparation and ambiance. A gem.

        1. Where are you coming from? Will you be driving or taking the train?

          I think Rina's is solid if you are already in Genova, but it is not a destination restaurant. Also, it is a completely enclosed urban restaurant, not really on the seaside, and it appears you want the seaside. If, however, part of the day's agenda is seeing Genova itself, Rina's serves the classics and prides itself on freshness, so worth having on the list.

          Some of the best seafood restaurants in view of the sea along the coast have what many people would consider break the bank prices. Some of the places are exquisite in their simplicity, but easier to make recommendations knowing your budget.

          2 Replies
          1. re: barberinibee

            We would be taking the train down from Torino. Da Rina sounds like it may fit the bill--though there is something to be said for those little seaside shacks that put out great, simple food in basic surroundings.

            1. re: GeraldI

              Most of the seaside shacks along coast do not serve grand seafood lunches. They serve farinata and focaccia col formaggio and piles of fried anchoives. It is pretty hard to pinpoint a great spot for that, although I like La Marinella in Nervi for focaccia col formaggio (it's right at the train station overlooking the sea). If you would like to go cheap and simple and seaside shack, it is worth buying David Downie's Food Wine: Italian Riviera & Genoa to check out his recs, all of which are budget friendly and downhome Riviera.

              Since you are coming from Torino, you might seriously consider allende's suggestion of heading to Varigotti, because I think you can take a train to Savona, yes? That would shorten the trip. I don't believe there is a train station in Varigotti (I could be wrong), so you would probably need to go to Finale Ligure Marina and take a taxi. (Maybe allende knows). Don't know if the trains would get you there by lunch time -- you'd need to look that up -- and you really should check prices to see what they are and if you would enjoy paying them! If allende doesn't stop back to give the cost of an optimal lunch with wine, I believe that restaurant is in the Michelin guide.

              But otherwise, you might want to make a stop at the Libreria Co-op in the piazza Castello in Torino and pick up a copy of the Osterie d'Italia guide and see what appeals to you. The guide might inspire you to other destinations as well. You might change your mind about a Sunday seafood lunch if it is raining on the coast, and prefer to head over to Vercelli instead for risotti.

          2. Its probably not in the same league as the other restaurants mentioned, but we have always liked Vegia Zena, located right on the harbour front on Vico dei Serridio, one of the little lanes almost directly opposite the aquarium.

            Nice simple trattoria, good ambience and seafood and easy on the budget.