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Sep 17, 2013 03:57 PM

Lunch between Bologna and Rimini

In three weeks we will be arriving in Bologna for a two week trip through northern Italy. We arrive in Bologna around noon and will be driving to Rimini. I am looking for recommendations for a nice lunch that first day possibly somewhere between Bologna and Rimini. We will just be getting off the plane and would like a memorable first meal. Any suggestions? We are driving so we are open to all options. Also looking for a light dinner recommendations in Rimini that night.

Thanks in advance.

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  1. I really enjoyed my lunch at Trattoria Tubino in San Pietro in Casale, which is about a 30 minute drive from the Bologna airport. I adored the food, which stays very close to the home cooking and market produce of this agricultural belt. It was torture to try to decide from the menu what to eat. This is not a fancy place, but a bright and quirky one, with a charming, earthy chef who was a wonderful host. You don't need to reserve ahead, but you should probably call en route to them know you are coming in case you get lost.

    You really will need to map out your route ahead of time, and it would probably help if you had a GPS because the tiny entrance is setback from the street and not easy to spot. Take a look on Google street view before travelling. You will be cutting it fairly close for the lunch hour, even if your plane lands on time and you are able to zip through the process of retrieving luggage and getting your rental car. You probably won't arrive until 1.30pm or later.

    I realize that this would you take on a jog north, rather than sticking to a direct southwest route to Rimini, but I think the nearness of the trattoria to the airport is a real plus for sitting down to eat within the standard lunch hour. But maybe someone will come up with a suggestion that keeps you heading south the whole time.

    2 Replies
    1. re: barberinibee

      This is good info, as I fly out of BLQ not infrequently. I look forward to checking it out.

      1. re: ghiottone

        I hope you will report back. If you are familiar with driving in the area of the airport, you might experiment with taking one of the rural roads through the agricultural fields to San Pietro in Casale.

        I wanted to add that despite the very unpretentious cooking and presentation, there is genuine artistic or aesthetic sensibility at work in the kitchen and throughout the small restaurant. I found it quite interesting, as well as delicious, to have lunch there.

    2. My first thought was Ravenna, but maybe you are visiting there separately?

      I found an interesting item online - a map of the slowfood osterie in E-R.

      I notice that Gigina is close to the ring road around Bologna, just before the A13 splitoff. But I have to admit that I am intrigued by BB's new recommendation.

      1 Reply
      1. re: jen kalb

        I don't think the travelers can make it to Ravenna by the time kitchens start closing.

        Trattoria Gigina at the periphery of Bologna is certainly a possibility (it's closer than Tubino), although I don't know where one parks around there, and it is definitely a more "urban" traffic-filled drive than heading off to San Pietro in Casale. Of the 2 trattorie, I like Tubino better. But if one were looking for the Bolognese classics specifically, then Gigina is more urban in that respect too.

        I don't know if any region other than Emilia Romagna has mapped out its Slow Food restaurants online. You can see that San Pietro in Casale has another Slow Food restaurant. I went to Tubino partly because the other one -- Tana del Grillo -- was closed. (I was on my way to go sightseeing in Tresigallo.)

        Southwest of Bologna is Imola, which is only a bit longer drive than my original suggestion, and it is right on the route to Rimini. Imola also has two Slow Food places, as you can see on the map, as well the storied ristorante San Domenico, but I've yet to visit Imola, so can't comment on any of them.