Curators Eugenio Signoroni and Marco Bolasco presented in Turin the Slow Food Guide to the ‘Osterie d’Italia 2019‘, which is at its 29th edition. Bolasco introduced the guide explaining that tradition and territory have become cultural objectives, the offer of wines and other interesting drinks has grown, and more than ever at the stove there are young talented chefs who retain the informality and price of the osteria but have solid bases of contemporary cuisine.
But what is exactly an osteria? Which are its defining characteristics? To give an answer to these questions and to summarize what is happening in the panorama of traditional catering, ‘Osteria d’Italia 2019’ presents the Decalogue of the contemporary osteria, i.e. ten points that make it a great destination:
1. It is welcoming and convivial
2. It offers a fair value for money
3. It knows well the raw material that it uses
4. It works with local products
5. It knows how to best pair the wine, even the house one
6. It has no tasting menu
7. It does not mock important restaurants and it is proud of its plebeian roots
8. It is modern without denying the past
9. It does not follow fashions, but often anticipates them
10. It has a good innkeeper, or more than one
Throughout Italy, the osterie that meet all of these prerequisites in an outstanding way, and thus are included in the guide, are 1617 (with 133 new entries in the latest edition). Among them, there are 213 osterie where the remarkable selection of cheeses is by itself worth a visit, 361 ones that have a wine list particularly attentive to the local territory, 484 ones that produce their own vegetables, 370 ones that offer a vegetarian menu, and 321 ones that offer also accommodation. Moreover, the best ones are indicated on the guide with the snail symbol of Slow Food, the snail: as many as 279 osterie have been declared worthy of the prestigious badge of honor.