On Sunday night the fridge was empty. In addition to being Sunday it was a festa nazionale, hence all supermarkets were closed. We had dinner at this cosy and intimate Osteria. I realize that, although I have blogged about Osterias before, I have never actually defined what an Osteria is. Will attempt this today.
Osterias are a type of old and very typical Italian Restaurants. In the old days they could be described as taverns serving wine and food (or wine alone; allowing you to bring your own food). They were cheap and meant for locals/ travelers (the word Osteria derives from the latin word “hospite”, meaning host). In the city of Bologna you can find some very old Osterias; like for example the Osteria delle Sole dating back to 1465, and still running.
The concept of Osteria has very much evolved since. You now find very fancy Osterias with great food,decor, music and all sorts of entertainment. The Menu is usually short and written with chalk on a black board, it mostly includes regional specialties like pastas or charcuterie trays with different sorts of breads…etc. In any case there are certain features which have outlived the years like for example its darkish, candle light cosy environment, the shared tables and wine tradition.
Osteria ” La Tigre” (map here) is a two room Osteria with big windows and walls fool of old pictures and posters. Dark with relaxing music, the quality of the food was outstanding, the service and the presentation were great too. We shared some bruschetta with Parma ham, pecorino cheese and honey. I had a salad and Macho had the Carpaccio; which was served with pecorino cheese and topped with a touch of balsamic vinegar. To drink I had a glass of red wine (San Giovese) and for dessert we had the house cheese cake; which by the way was made with Slow Food Ingredients. Will be telling you all about the slow food movement in Bologna soon ;).
Great food, not many tourists. Average price. Romantic and relaxing environment.