[Updated October 2015]
I have a good friend from Turin who is smart, gorgeous, athletic (a Ph.D in chemistry and a SCUBA instructor), and knows the best places to go out. So on my request, she and another friend put together a list of where to eat and drink in Turin. See the map at the bottom for locations of all her recommendations.
Turin, Milan, and Parma are famous for their before-dinner-drink-with-unlimited-free-food, also known as the aperitivo tradition. Go to Zonk to sip a cocktail, fill your plate from the free buffet, and people-watch before dinner. Tip: aperitivo bars are perfect when you’re jet-lagged and hungry, and not sure you can make it until the restaurants open at 7.30 pm.
There are lots of options for eating without breaking the bank. Try pizza, sandwiches in a café, buying groceries at the supermarket and having a picnic, or a kebab. When Roberta and I went out to dinner in October 2015, we ate at Bottega Baretti which I really liked. It’s trendy, has a great buzz, good food, good beer, and a nice atmosphere. Reserve in advance though.
Have a beer and hang out with friends at Six Nations Pub, on Corso Vittorio Emanuele II, number 28.
Don’t be fooled by spartan surroundings: great kebabs (kebaps in Italian) are found at Damir, who on his website promises “fresh local meat prepared by a Turk”.
Turin is one of Italy’s major chocolate producers, probably best known for its gianduiotto chocolate, but the area is also the home of Nutella. Go to Guido Gobino (web site is only in Italian and Japanese, interestingly) for a hot chocolate, or to sample some of the famous locally-made chocolate. Ask for suggestions on liqueur pairings, if you’re there for dessert. Tied for first place in this category, and with a great historic atmosphere, is Baratti & Milano.
Never leave an Italian city without sampling its gelato, and in Turin the place to go is Fiorio.
Choosing a pizzeria in Italy is a serious task, and you don’t want to go wrong. So head to Pizzeria Regina Margherita in Via del Carmine, 2. Phone 011.4310287. Equally great is Pizzeria Cristina on Corso Palermo 101. Phone 011.2481706. Always try to make reservations.
This is a hard one, only because Turin has so many great restaurants. And really, if you just walk around the Quadrilatero Romano neighborhood, you can’t go wrong. To wow your guests, or just to experience an unforgettable meal, go to Del Cambio, one of the most famous restaurants in Turin. The building is on the country’s official list of Historic Places, and the food is worth it if budget allows. For something with a more rustic atmosphere, the Tre Galline specializes in local food and has had good reviews for three centuries.
If you’re into gastronomic eclecticism, it’s worth heading to the town of Rivoli, just outside of Turin, to dine at the Michelin-starred Combal.Zero. With incredible food, and views to match, this restaurant scores consistently high in reviews.
If you’d like a break from Italian food, but are looking for something higher-end than a kebab, Wasabi is an excellent Japanese restaurant, particularly known for its sushi and sashimi. Address: Corso Ferrucci 72, Phone +39 011 447 3812.
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