Tuesday 2 August 2011

Trieste, Italy - Greedy Diva's Gluttonous Travels

Prawns with truffles at Enoteca Sgonico

Trieste is a beautiful city at the north eastern tip of Italy, near the border with Slovenia. You can stroll along the seafront or the huge piazzas, take a dip in the bright blue Adriatic to cool down from the hot Italian sun, or stay very happily focussed on the plate in front of you without moving too far from the nearest gelataria. Fantastic fresh seafood is the order of the day here - and you won't be disappointed in the pasta either.

If you are prepared to venture away from the well trodden streets, it's well worth seeking out Enoteca Sgonico (Sgonico, 15, 3410 Trieste, Tel: 040 2296623 - closed Mondays).  You'll have the meal of a lifetime and there will not be a tourist in sight (we were there with some local friends). For barely the cost of a pub meal in London, you can feast on course after course of the days best (*superb*) catches. Below are just some of the morsels we devoured on our long Saturday afternoon lunch - all of it amazing, fresh and the quality of the seafood treated with the utmost respect, served raw or just lightly cooked with a splash of fine Italian olive oil.

I can't advise on hotels as we stayed at our friend's fabulous beach house, where we drank Italian wine and cooked up huge seabass or spaghetti with scampi by night. (I'm using the royal "we" here - I mostly held out my plate/glass for more while Alessio and Tim toiled away in the kitchen).

Alessio's spaghetti with scampi

For more great seafood with some rather spiffy views, and again off the beaten track, we loved the casual Tendarossa (Strada Costiera, 172 - Santa Croce, Trieste, Tel: 040 224214. Closed Wednesdays). We sat on the patio overlooking the ocean, drinking lovely wine and feasting on gnocchi with crab, spaghetti vongole, and grilled calamari. Service is super friendly and helpful - you won't need a menu as the waiter guides you through the fresh catches of the day. 

TPG would never allow me finish this post without mention of Buffet Da Pepi (Via della Cassa di Risparmio 3, Tel: 040 366858), a tiny, charismatic little bar to scoff down cured and fresh steaming hot pork with sauerkraut, mustard and beer. 

Of course, no trip to Italy is complete without generous helpings of gelati. Do not miss Gelataria Zampolli (via Carlo Ghega, 10, Trieste, 34132), will be rammed with locals until all hours. As usual, I find it hard to go past the Nutella gelati. This could be the best gelati in all of Italy. 

Ryanair flies directly to Trieste. A fabulous escape for a long weekend, or longer. Thanks to our fabulous hosts, Alessio and Raffaela for yet another amazing foodie adventure.


  1. There is this beautiful place just 20 or so minutes outside of Trieste called Duino (basically between Trieste and the airport). Small fishing village with 2 great fish restaurants, you should check it out if you are in the area again.

  2. Just planning a weekend break and this is now top of the list. Looks ace. Were the restaurants £££? Nutella gelato is my absolute fave too. Yum.

  3. Ute - thanks for the tip, will definitely look into it next time.

    Claire - The restaurants are terrific value. I can't remember exact costs (this trip was taken in May and I've been a bit lazy!)but I do remember everything was really good value. £ to ££. And I also remember that we were SWIMMING in MAY!

  4. I can't believe you came all the way to Trieste and did not mention it. I would have joined you for a sprtiz or two!
    The restaurant Ute mentions is La Dama Bianca, maybe a little old fashion decor but fabulous food in Duino.
    TendaRossa e Buffet da Pepi are a classic too: Pepi has recently been mentioned in the NYT!
    The view over the Adriatic sea from TendaRossa is one gr8 place to watch the Barcolana (the famous international Regatta).
    I count on your email if it'll ever happen you'll be in the area again.

  5. Love this! There seems to be more and more hidden gems in Italy to explore and discover and I am already finding myself on more Italy trips this year than anywhere else! =)

  6. I want to be in Trieste now! This all looks so incredible. Looks like the nutella ice cream had swirls of spread in it rather than being a uniform nutella flavour? Yum.


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