Quick Look at Italian Food and Drink Culture

There are a million reasons to visit Tuscany: The Sun, the sand, the mountains, the culture, the olive groves… the list is endless. However, wine and food should always feature. Here are a few cultural pointers that will help you enjoy your time, and your food in Italy. After the sun is over the yard arm (about 18.00) it is aperitivo time. You can drink anything you like but traditionally prosecco (a sparkling white wine) or campari. For something local try a Negroni, which originated in Florence in the 1920’s
Negroni
Negroni
At all the best aperitivo bars there is a buffet which is free when you buy a drink. Normally you pay from €5 upwards for your drink and then help yourself to food. With pizza, Italians normally drink beer, cola or fizzy orange. Lunch is at 1pm. After 2 pm you will be lucky to get served. Lunch is one of the rare occasions that Italians are punctual. Dinner is from 8pm – only places accustomed to tourists will serve dinner before this time. Tucking your napkin into the front of your shirt is perfectly acceptable – even if you are grown up. Bright lighting in restaurants is the norm. Ironically, it is really hard to find an intimate, romantic environment.