Italy offers some of the best food in the world but of course the major cities are also full of tourist traps. On my food tours clients often ask me how to spot an authentic restaurant to avoid eating cheap frozen food to sample the true experience, here are a few things to avoid:

The guy trying to get you to come into the restaurant – This guy is not necessary when the dishes speak for themselves

Food displays at the front entrance – the only display you want is the one you order

Menus with a million options – Italians eat fresh produce that are in season and this includes no roman artichoke in the summer. The kitchens are also very small so they don’t have the storage space to keep all of the 500 items listed.

Continuous hours – This is may be frustrating that you are starving and looking for lunch at 4pm after walking around hours at one of the major sights. Restaurants generally serve lunch from 1pm-3pm and resume service at 7pm. In order to serve fresh, homemade dishes the cooks need time to prepare them during the break.

Buon appetito!