Northern vs. Southern Italian Cuisine

If there’s one thing that we’ve tried to hammer home on our blog, it’s that the world of Italian cuisine is seemingly never-ending! So many different recipes, homegrown ingredients, and adaptations of classic dishes are guaranteed to make your taste buds happy. If you go to Italy, you may find that the options you have in the north are vastly different than what you’d find in the south. Some distinct differences between Northern and Southern Italian cuisine become more noticeable as you visit each region. We’ll give you a guide to the biggest contrasts between the two areas below!

Southern Italian Cuisine: The Staples

The regions that make up Southern Italy are all closer to the sea than those of the North, meaning that seafood heavily influences many of their dishes. However, this isn’t the only reason why Southern Italian cuisine is so revered. The warm weather that the region brings makes it a great spot to grow many of Italy’s famous herbs and spices. Olive oil, fresh vegetables, and plantations are just a few of the noteworthy examples of ingredients made in the South. Many of the pasta-based Italian dishes are more prominent in Southern Italy than they are in Northern Italy, as pasta and bread are the two most popular starches that go with each meal. Pizza is also far more popular in the South thanks to the use of these homegrown ingredients and unique cheeses.

Northern Italian Cuisine: The Staples

While Northern Italy doesn’t have the luxury of being so close to the water, it doesn’t mean that their cuisine options are any less delicious! Because the region is so close to the Appalachian Mountains, many of the dishes are influenced by those in Germany and Switzerland, which also share close proximity.  Risotto is a more popular dish in Northern Italian cuisine than its Southern counterpart, as rice seems to be the starch of choice. The main meat of choice in the North is cattle, as the conditions are more favorable for the flavor of the meat. Delicious Italian-based meats like prosciutto and salami are highly prevalent here – Northern Italians love their salty meats! Parmesan cheese also originated in the North; while Southern Italians can stake a claim on pizza, Northerners can stake their claim on the most popular grating cheese out there!

The Best Italian Cuisines at Trattoria Il Panino

There’s something that Northern and Southern Italian cuisines have in common – we have the best of both of them at Trattoria Il Panino! We specialize in a wide variety of Italian delights that will transport your taste buds right to the heart of Italy. For an authentic Italian experience without the cost of travel, make a reservation with us today!