Believe it or not, Italian food culture is very different from how say, Americans eat Italian food while in their country. In fact, there are certain rules tourists may want to keep in mind when they find themselves in Italy, about to step into a restaurant.
Here are some of them. 1. Only have water or wine when eating.
Italians enjoy tasting their food well and not messing up their taste buds by drinking ginger ale with a bowl of pasta. This is why coming into an Italian restaurant means finding a bottle of sparkling water and/or a bottle of wine on the table.
The only exception is pizza, where a can of Coke or beer is acceptable. Otherwise, tourists are encouraged to have apertivi or before-dinner drinks or digestivi, after-dinner drinks. 2. Never ask for "spaghetti with meatballs" or "fettuccine alfredo"
For tourists to save themselves from looking like a fool in an Italian restaurant in Italy, they should never ask for "spaghetti with meatballs" or "fettuccine alfredo" because they don't exist in this side of the world.
Tourists should order something with the word panna, which means cream if they want alfredo pasta and pasta al ragù, which means meat sauce and polpette, which are meatballs separately so no waiter will end up calling you disgusting. 3. Skip eggs for breakfast.
Eggs are best eaten as frittata for dinner or boiled paired with salad during lunch or as a snack in Italy. For tourists to make eggs for breakfast is almost a cardinal sin while in the country.
Instead, have some espresso and a sweet pastry to start the day off. If a salty fix is needed for breakfast, have some ham and cheese sandwich at a local café. 4. "Peperoni pizza" is different from what's back home.
Peperoni (with a single p) is plural for bell peppers. If tourists end up ordering this in the restaurant, they're about to get something far from the red circular meat they're used to back home.
To get the "pepperoni" one wants, it's best to order "pizza al salamino," "pizza calabrese" or "pizza diavola". 5. Don't ask for the typical salad dressing.
Ranch dressing is something close to non-existent in Italy. Tourists need to understand that salad dressing in the country means olive oil and vinegar. Contrary to popular belief, Italians have a wide variety of olive oil and vinegar dressings that are full of flavor.