- Amateur designer? A good collection of free fonts
- By the same man who brought us the video masterpiece, “Hooked on a Feeling” – it’s “Jump in My Car.” The Hoffmeister. You have to ridicule/admire a man that has no shame. Watching it makes me want to use bleach on my eyes to bring back some purity.
- Very cool graph to show popular names in the last 100 years
Like I promised, some “Best of Pavia”- not an exhaustive list, since I’m already working on my new one here in Milan!
Salate (Savoury) Stuff
A two-story hostaria, steps from the Duomo of Pavia was one of our later finds while living in Pavia.
One of the best things on the menu is the Tagliere Cupolone which means “cutting board.” And its name doesn’t lie – a spread of four different cold cuts or salumi are placed on a cutting board and brought out. Also they bring a selection of things depending on the season, including grilled eggplant/zucchini, marinated Borettane onions (this sounds weird but is delicious), Porcini mushrooms and beans, bruschetta, stuffed small tomatoes, or
They usually offer you an aperitivo, a pre-dinner drink which is usually prosecco, and a small bite to eat. This can be bruschetta but the last two times I was there, it was lardo, which sounds very similar to lard. That’s because it is. Being a big food-texture girl, and having already eaten it other times, I had to pass.
The fact that the menu changes often can be wonderful and also frightening until you get to know the restaurant well. We brought a few groups of people there and weren’t able to give recommendations because we hadn’t tried any of the new menu items. The restaurant itself was recommended to me by a fellow expat, Jennifer in Vigevano, who works in Pavia.
I recommend it for a nice, cozy dinner (the lighting is much lower than that of the pictures on the site) staying well in the city center – steps from the Duomo, thus the name. Their wine selection is also quite extensive.
We also liked Antica Trattoria Ferrari (via dei Mille, 111 – 0382-539025), which is just across the Ticino river and over the old covered bridge (and nearer to our old apartment). You can take the 1 bus from the center or the 3 bus from the station, changing in the center to the 1. Their tortelli di zucca con burro e salvia (pumpkin ravioli with a butter and sage sauce) was quite good.
A pizzeria that was excellent, and right near our house (take-away!) is Ristorante Pizzeria Italia. Via Bramante, 8 – tel. 0382 25 086
The name is confusing – is it a pizzeria, or a restaurant? The answer is both. In fact, they are known for their seafood offerings. Sante and I never really took them up on it being as he was born in a port town and my stepdad the fisherman brought us fresh fish often, we weren’t sure they would live up to their reputation. They were packed almost every night of the week.
But their pizza is quite good! This was my favorite pizza, the Norma with salame piccante added. You’ll think I’m crazy but I’m really getting into peperoncino, hot pepper.
Other than the famous Cornetto (the Royal Cappuccino is my current fav) which kicks the Drumstick’s butt (sorry, no patriotism when it comes to ice cream), nothing really compares to Italian gelato bought straight from the gelateria (jeh-lah-teh-REE-ah). Even if we did have room in our old freezer (it was 6 inches tall and one foot wide), I wouldn’t keep much ice cream in it.
Sante and I have made it a quest to find the good ice cream wherever we go. And it’s something that we can just sense – what takes an ice cream from the mediocre to the great! It’s in the texture and aftertaste. I have been known to thrown away mediocre ice cream – I don’t owe them anything!
Gelateria La Perla (white pages)
Viale Ludovico Il Moro, 39 – 0382 468913
It’s situated a little further from the city center, but the 1 bus (towards Rione Scala) stops right near it. They have a nice covered patio area in front with lots of seating as well as some seating inside (good for the winter!).
They don’t get very adventurous with their flavors, but what they do have is always good. In winter, they have probably 10-15 flavors available and they increase this by another 5-10 in summer, usually more fruit flavors. Their pistacchio is always creamy and the right, natural color green. Never buy the fluorescent green kind. Ever.
One of the best flavors they have is Biscotti, cookies. Not the cookie dough kind you may be used to, but pieces of real cookie mixed in with chocolate and (egg) cream flavors. Very good!
Gelateria Da Cesare (white pages)
15 Corso Garibaldi – 0382 25074
I mentioned this place in a previous post about their wonderful hot chocolate with the homemade zabaione. In the dead of winter, people were taking away big tubs of their ice cream, so you know that’s good, too. The place itself is tiny so expect a wait if you want to sit down, and if it’s winter, hope you can squeeze inside to wait.
An add-on to the above mention of Pizzeria Ristorante Italia is their desserts. They had a full dessert case every night of the week with homemade Tiramisu, Pastiera, even cheesecake! Our favorite are the Profiteroles, which are actually French, not Italian. Little cream puffs covered in chocolate. These are the “Nero” version, dark outside, white inside, and they also have the reverse which is great.