Where to Experience Great Italian Cooking

On Friday, we featured a primer on navigating the typical Italian restaurant menu.

That brought to mind a feature that ran in USA Today about a week before Christmas. The headline said it all: “10 great places that feel a little like Italy.”

And let’s face it: A place can’t feel like Italy without an abundance of Italian food at the ready. Great restaurants go with great Italian neighborhoods.

So, just in case you missed it, here’s a look at USA Today’s list… which begins with a bit of a surprise…

1. French Quarter, New Orleans – Home of the muffaletta sandwich.

2. Little Italy, New York City.

3. Arthur Avenue, The Bronx, N.Y.  – Check out the Arthur Avenue Retail Market for cured meats, cheeses and specialty items.

4. 9th Street Italian Market, Philadelphia – Features more than 100 vendors spread out over 10 blocks.

5. The Hill, St. Louis – Try the toasted ravioli at Charlie Gitto’s.

6. North End, Boston – Caffe Vittoria is famous for its coffee and pastries.

7. Federal Hill, Providence, R.I. – Venda Ravioli is a huge store that sells 200 types of pasta.

8. North Beach, San Francisco – Caffe Trieste features opera on Saturday afternoons, while guests sip espresso.

9. Little Italy, San Diego.

10. Wooster Street, New Haven, Conn. Seek out the white clam pizza at Frank Pepe Pizzeria Napoletana.

Getting hungry? If you’re not close enough to any of these great destinations, call up your favorite pizzeria and get a pie delivered. While you’re waiting, open a bottle of red wine. Don’t be too concerned about the variety.

Italian food, including pizza, seems to make just about any wine taste great.

Posted in Editor's Journal
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