Ever wonder why some restaurants are called Bistro, others Bar & Grill
and/or simply Restaurant. In Italy, Restaurants are usually called, Ristorante,
Trattoria and sometimes Osteria. In Italy, the name defines the service and
type of restaurant you are considering.
A Ristorante in Italy offers a more formal presentation. Food is served in
a very special way with table cloths, napkins and a full table setting of plates
and silverware. Usually higher priced and several courses served.
On the other hand the Trattoria, is a more casual setting and represents
an eating establishment which one would visit for a good meal at a fair
price and is perhaps a regular locals spot. No frills, good food at reasonable
Now, the Osteria, which you would not see here in America, is the oldest
form of restaurant in Italy and stems from the days of horse and carriage
travel where hungry folks would stop along the wayside at an Inn for food
and lodging. As time went on over night lodging gave way to serving local
food specialties and locally made wines. You might say it was like our pubs.
I know of one restaurant which calls itself an Osteria. It is in Salt Lake
City, Utah. I will write about it in my next blog post. It is outstanding!