One of the important “Italian” experiences is having a tasty meal in a restaurant. Although it sounds impossible in Italy, the country that takes food so seriously, you can order the food that will disappoint you. That is why you have to pay attention to several things when choosing a place to eat. You will definitely enjoy your food in a great variety of restaurants in Lucca if you follow this advice.

If you want to eat better and pay less, wander around locations off the beaten track. There you can find family-owned trattorias with great food that is not over priced. Don’t be afraid to check out some locations that look not super-friendly for tourists. Even if you can’t speak the language, you might be surprised by the food you receive—and it might end up being your new favorite dish!

Also, make sure to look for places where Italians eat. You will easily recognize them by listening to the language they speak. That is where the food will be authentic. Who knows better than locals where the most delicious food is served?If the menu is only in Italian, it is probably where only local people eat. Don’t be frightened to order food you are not totally sure about – it is probably tastier than anything whose name you can understand in the restaurants where mostly tourists eat.

You should know that Italians have specific meal times, lunch from 12PM – 2.30PM and dinner from 7.30PM – 11PM. The restaurants that are open all day are those for tourists. This means you might have to make a reservation in advance in order to make sure that you get a chance to try out the restaurants that appeal to you. While a later dinner might seem a little odd, it can help you prolong your day of sightseeing and give you an excuse for an afternoon nap like many locals choose to do.

If you see asparagus on the menu in the summer, or pumpkin in the spring, the food is not fresh but frozen. You should better choose restaurants with seasonal fruit and vegetables. Don’t be afraid to try some new dishes, as well! Keep in mind, that although a menu fisso might not sound very stylish, this is a great lunch that locals eat and typically includes the first, the second course and a side dish, water, wine, and coffee.

Finally, once you have asked for the check (or ilconto), you don’t need to necessarily tip. Most waiters make decent money at their jobs, and tipping them too much can be considered offensive. When in doubt, make sure to ask whether or not a tip is customary at that type of restaurant. Choosing where you want to go and eat when you are in Italy can determine what type of experience you will have while you are there. If you choose the right spot, you’re more likely to remember your time in Italy years later!

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