Best Restaurants In Bologna, Italy – Find Them Here! juni 6, 2022 – Posted in: Italy, Travel – Tags: Bologna, Food, Holiday, Italy, Restaurants, Reviews, Vacations, Weekend Breaks
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How to find the best restaurants in Bologna
There are lots of great restaurants in Bologna – and here’s a little guide to some of the best! The location in the Emilia-Romagna region, Italy’s pantry, guarantees really great food. The region is known for producing world-famous delicacies such as parmesan, balsamico, mortadello, parma ham and delicious wines. Bologna is also famous for its sfogline, pasta bakers who have made it an art form to make the many pasta varieties by hand.
Where to eat in Bologna
Bologna offers plenty of great restaurants, and in fact it is hard to find a restaurant that does not serve a good meal. Where in other tourist cities, especially in Rome, you have to be careful not end up in one of the tourist traps, in Bologna you can just walk into any restaurant. If there is a smell in the air of good food, just sit down at the table.
In relation to the size of the city, there are a disproportionate number of good restaurants, and it can be difficult to pick out a few restaurants that you just have to visit. Still, here are a few tips for unique, gastronomic experiences in Bologna that you have to try. And PLEASE! do remember to book a table, especially on Friday and Saturday evenings – and do it from home, when booking your holiday .
About the recommendations for restaurants in Bologna
Before we take you to the good restaurants in Bologna, however, we want to tell you about what restaurants we usually go for – so you can decide if you want to follow our recommendations.
We love to eat well and restaurant visits are usually a big part of our vacations. We do not necessarily eat expensive, but always locally and with local ingredients. We are also always on the hunt for the great dining experiences and prefer to eat something we have never tasted before.
Best restaurants in Bologna – a small selection
La Baita Vecchia Malga
Everywhere in the city you can order a tagliere di salumi, a plate with slices of sausages, hams and salami, served with tigelle, the small, round breads baked in a flat iron. If you choose a tagliier formaggio, you will definitely be served parmesan on your cheese plate!
If you want to taste some of the best specialties the region has to offer, make your way past La Vecchia Malga in one of the cozy side streets to Piazza Maggiore. The delicatessen has been around since 1969 and with its large selection of cheeses, hams and sausages, it’s irresisteble for both locals and tourists.
Read more here: La Baita Vecchia Malga
Trattoria Caffè del Rosso
The small, informal family restaurant is a 10-minute walk north of Piazza Maggiore. Here you get an excellent fair-priced lunch. The menu consists of classic dishes from the area, and try a Lasagna alla Bolognese with the green lasagne plates or a Tortellini in Brodo. The latter are tortellini served in a clear soup. If you haven’t booked a table for lunch, arrive before 1 pm, when the restaurant begins to fill up with local diners.
Read more here: Trattoria Caffè del Rosso
Drogheria della Rosa
One of the restaurants in Bologna that you just have to visit is Drogheria della Rosa. Here you get simple and very delicious regional dishes, served in a relaxed and authentic atmosphere. The menu is explained to you by the owner himself, Emanuele Addone, who comes to the table and tells about the day’s temptations. There is no menu and no prices, and when the sweet waiters at the same time continue to offer starters, a small glass of wine, bread and freshly picked tangerines, you start to think that you have been fooled into a tourist trap.
But no, they are just being kind! So go with the flow and say yes to anything offered. The many small extra servings are just an expression of the kindness you meet everywhere in Bologna. For 50 euros you here get two dishes of pasta, two desserts, two glasses of good wine – and then everything else. If you order dessert, the bottle of Limoncello will be placed on the table, so you then can supply yourself.
We recommend that you try the Tagliatelle ragù, spaghetti with meat sauce. (Do not ask for Spaghetti Bolognese when you are in Bologna, because that is not the name of the dish here.) Also order one of the great steaks as a secondi, main course. If you have room for it, finish with a mascarpone al cioccolato, a sinful dessert where you get a whole plate of mascarpone cream with chocolate sprinkles on top. Here, the large bottle of Limoncello really makes good sense!
Read more here: Drogheria della Rosa
Osteria al 15
Nex to Porta San Mamolo is the small restaurant Osteria al 15. You can easily walk past the door, because the restaurant does not make a big fuss about itself from the outside. But it doesn’t have to either. When you open the door, you’ll see a restaurant filled with ocals, who all come here for both the food and the cozy atmosphere.
Osteria al 15 is definitely worth the walk from the city center, because here you get very tasty, homemade food. The portions are large and the prices low and there are many specialties to choose from. Try a Squacquerone di Romagna for starters or a Pesto Modenese. The first is a delicious fresh cheese, while the pesto has nothing to do with basil! The main ingredient in Pesto Modenese is Lardo, spicy and aged lard, and served with the little tigelle breads.
Continue with one of the delicious pasta dishes, for example Tortelloni Burro e Salvia, cheese-filled tortellini with butter and sage, or a dish of Polpetta, large meatballs served with fried potatoes. Finish off with a Tiramisu or the house’s famous Chocolate Salame, a biscuit cake but shaped like a spiced sausage!
Read more here: Osteria al 15
An inexpensive meal – and an expensive cup of coffee
As you approach the campus, you will find plenty of small take away’s where you can get a quick and inexpensive snack. Especially in the streets Largo Respighi and Via Zamboni, as well as in the square Piazza Giuseppe Verdi you will find lots of offers for a piece of pizza al taglio, the square pizza slices sold by weight or a sandwich with mortadella.
On the other hand, it is expensive to sit down in one of the cafés around the central square, Piazza Maggiore. If you walk a short distance down one of the side streets, the price of a cup of coffee will be halved.
Good bars in Bologna
The locals go out to eat late, preferably after 9 pm. Before going to one of the many wonderful restaurants in Bologna, spend the time at one of the city’s countless bars, where you can enjoy an Aperitivo, a drink before dinner, preferably a Negroni or the sweeter and bubbly Negroni Sbagliato. After the meal you drink Aperol Spritz or Campari Spritz – or you just drink what you want!
The street Via Zamboni is full of bars, and here the city’s youth hang out at the student bars. If you apreciate a well made cocktail, visit the cozy Gran Bar right in the city center. On Via Pescherie Vecchie there are always plenty of nice restaurants and bars where you can get a good glass of wine with a snack.
Tips for your holiday in Bologna
Where to stay in Bologna – best areas
There are many wonderful hotels in Bologna – so where are you going to live? On Booking.com you can see the large selection of hotels in Bologna, and right here you’ll get a few good tips for booking a hotel in the Italian city.
As long as you choose a hotel within the old city walls, marked by the ring road, you live within walking distance to all the best restaurants and sights. In the small streets in the center of the old town center there is a cozy street life around the clock. Goods are delivered early in the morning, and both tourists and locals stay out late, having a great time in the city.
If you are sensitive to sound, choose a hotel that is closer to the city wall than Piazza Maggiore. On the other hand, the old town center is where all the fun happens and where the most charming hotels are located. Our best advice is to bring a set of earplugs and join the party! Are you especially fond of partying, then find a hotel near the new university.
See all hotels in Bologna on Booking.com by doing your own search here:
A recommendation: Al Cappello Rosso
We stayed at the iconic hotel Al Cappello Rosso, which since 1375 has welcomed guests to the charming hotel, lying only a few steps away from the city’s central Piazza Maggiore. The small luxury hotel with the authentic and charming atmosphere has over 600 years of experience in offering a luxurious holiday beyond the usual. The hotel has 33 splendid rooms and 10 apartments, decorated with the history of the house in mind. Some of the rooms are decorated by local artists, while others are themed rooms, such as “Shock in Pink”, which honors the legendary fashion designer Elsa Schiaparelli.
Al Cappello Rosso is a hotel for you who want to stay right in the center of a charming luxury hotel with lots of history.
How do you get to Bologna
Most larger airline companies fly out to Bologna. The airport of Bologna, Aeroporto G. Marconi Bologna (BLQ), is located north-west of the city, a 20-minute drive from the city center. You can board the airport bus headed for the train station in Bologna, and tickets can be purchased at the station or at Aerobus. It costs €6 per. person, while a taxi to the center costs between €15-20.