Italian Cuisine and Culture

Read all the exciting things our scholars have been up to!

Hi Guys,

I’m in Italy! The beauty of this place is unreal. I’ve been here for about a week and I’m still not completely settled in but I’m adjusting pretty well. Just to recap my first week let me first tell you about getting to Italy. So me and my friend who is studying abroad in the same program, had a flight that was supposed to be at 4:10pm. We left for the airport at 1pm just to be precautious even though we live 45 minutes from the airport.

However due to a rainstorm and multiple accidents on the highway we missed our flight. It was the most depressing day of our lives because we found out the next flight we could take would be 2 days later. Long story short, our trip started out rough. Everything changed when we finally did get to Italy though. The first thing I noticed was that almost all the buildings were yellow with a red rooftop. Right before landing as we hovered over Italy all you saw was green land and then a small patch of yellow (which turned out to be the houses). I don’t think I really had any expectations of what Italy would look like, but that was still surprising to me.

Once we got to our apartment the first meal I had that night was pasta with red sauce (can’t remember the exact name) and it was amazing! One big thing you should know about eating at Italian restaurants is that their bread isn’t salted. I was so disappointed because it looked so good and that was the first food item they brought to the table. Because Italy is known for not using a lot of salt in there diet they make their bread unsalted and the purpose for bread in a restaurant is to dip it in the sauce of whatever pasta dish you order.

So all in all the bread in Italy at restaurants in my opinion is very bland in my opinion and not meant to eat alone. Another big difference from Italian dining vs American dining is that in Italy the average dining time is 2 to 3 hours. There’s no waiter checking in on you often, the goal isn’t to get you out of the restaurant as soon as possible, and you typically are expected to get 2 courses, dessert, and then coffee. Italian dining is very laid back, its about the experience. They take pride in how they set the atmosphere of the restaurant and how they present the food. It’s not just about making money to them.

So after a week in Italy I’m completely obsessed with this country and never want to go home. My apartment is beautiful, there is restaurants on every corner, and gelato is the best thing in the world. I’m not going to lie I’ve had gelato everyday since being here but hey, that’s Italian culture for you right. I’m excited to see what the next five weeks have in store for me and I’ll keep you guys updated on all my experiences.

Untill next time,