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Parma, Italy Culinary Tour

Eat yourself silly where parmesan, prosciutto, and pasta reign supreme.
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Rating: 5 out of 5 by EveryTrail members
Difficulty: Easy
Duration: Multiple days

Overview :  The people of Parma have such a high opinion of their city they think of themselves as Parmesans first and Italians second. This can... more »

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Points of Interest

Two exquisitely frescoed rooms by Renaissance master and Emilia-Romagna native Antonio da Correggio.

Address:
3 Via Melloni, off Strada Garibaldi
Parma
Italy

Phone:
39-0521-533-221

2. Casa del Formaggio

Parma has an embarrassment of remarkable shops selling salumi, Parmesan, and prepared foods. You’ll never see a tourist in this one.

Address:
106 Via Nino Bixio
Parma
Italy

Phone:
39-0521-230-243

Say you knew some stylish, young, design-conscious Parmesans. And say they’d just redone an old farmhouse outside the city. Their eat-in kitchen might look like Croce di Malta. The concise menu (supple tortelli, fragile polpettine, silky Bavarian cream) changes daily.

Address:
8 Borgo Palmia
Parma
Italy

Phone:
39-0521-208-681

4. Enoteca Fontana

Parmesans take the pulse of their own city at this hectic institution, where the cheap nibbles are strangely better than the panini you pay a lot more for. If all you know of Lambrusco, Emilia-Romagna’s most famous-slash-notorious wine, is disco-era Riunite, Fontana will bring you up to speed. One revelation is that Lambrusco doesn’t have to be... More

If no one had told you this is one of the three or four finest places to eat in Parma, you might guess it anyway before even lifting a fork. In front of an interior window that looks from the dining room into the immaculate kitchen is a beautiful tableau of baskets, draped with linen and filled with house-made pastas. Perfectly ironed tablecloths ... More

Don’t miss the museum’s collection of prized Baroque paintings.

Address:
5 Piazzale della Pilotta
Parma
Italy

Phone:
39-0521-233-617

A platter of sbrisolona sits on a counter inside the front door, a good start. The menu gives the age and maker of the prosciutto (28 months, Leporati), and culatello (20 months, Consorzio di Zibello), another excellent sign. They say it’s impossible to have a bad plate of pasta in Parma, but the rabbit-mousse agnolotti and Swiss chard-and-ricotta... More

Vittorio Dalla Rosa Prati welcomes guests to his 14th-century hotel, a period-furnished seven-room guesthouse that overlooks the city’s 900-year-old cathedral.

Address:
7 Strada al Duomo
Parma
Italy

Phone:
39-0521-386-429

No matter how allergic you are to joyless, pompous restaurants, any eating survey of Parma would have to include this one, especially if someone else is paying. Beyond the silver chargers with crocheted doilies, flights of Parmesan and prosciutto are offered at 16, 26, and 29 months and 13, 24, and 36 months, respectively. The rest of the menu ... More

You could eat breakfast at this historic, aristocratic landmark every day for three months and never have the same pastry twice. Like all Italians, the Parmesans like their cornetti filled with just a scraping of preserves. Most places offer apricot and stop there; the day I was at Torino, it had apricot, peach, strawberry, black cherry—and blood ... More

Parma’s best restaurant is inserted in a hotel so plain and weirdly located (on the far side of the ring road that wraps the city) you can’t believe you’ve got the address right. Believe it. Cocchi is supercivilized without even seeming to try. The professional waitstaff, also with no obvious effort, attend to a clientele of Italian businessmen,... More

One of Italy’s legendary opera houses; its season runs from January to mid-April.

Address:
16/A Via Garibaldi
Parma
Italy

Phone:
39-0521-039-393

Set in the countryside just outside the city, Sapori is more ambitious, refined, and serious (but not too serious) than most trattorias in the Parma area, offering modern dishes so as not to seem old-fashioned (Parmesan gelato melting over a luscious hunk of molten eggplant in a pastry nest), and classic dishes so as not to seem out of touch with ... More