Verona Blog 1: wine, food and a good hotel

Following my recent visit to look at the 2008 Amarone wines, I can offer the following tips if you’re visting the delightful city of Verona for business or pleasure.

Where to stay:

Four-star Hotel Accademia is located in the heart of the city a short walk from, cafés, bars and outdoor market of the scenic the scenic Piazza delle Erbe. Traditional in style, this independent hotel is spacious and comfortable and the buffet breakfast is second to none. On my visit (January 2012) the staff were friendly and helpful. Double rooms from €135 (low season). Check for special offers. 12, Via Scala, www.accademiavr.it

Where to eat:

– Antica Bottega del Vino is one of Verona’s gastromic landmarks, and  as the name suggests, there’s an extensive wine list and cellar. Specialities include Risotto all’Amarone (see Verona Blog 2 for the recipe). Price guide: upmarket. 3, Vicolo Scudo di Francia, www.bottegavini.it

– Ristorante Greppia is a spacious family-run trattoria offering traditional dishes such as ossobuco (veal shank). Two courses per person with wine: €40, Vicolo Samaritina, www.ristorantegreppia.com

– Osteria dal Cavaliere is a contemporary wine bar where you can try some of the best wines of the region by the glass or bottle with ham and cheese including the delicious local cheese – Monte Veronese – or enjoy a more substantial meal. No booking required and good value. 3, Pizzetta Scala (off Via Scala).

Where to buy food and wine:

– Gastronomia di Via Stella: Feast your eyes on and extensive counter offering ready-made pasta dishes and hors d’oeuvres, local cheeses, salamis and more. You can’t come out empty-handed! 11, Via Stella, www.gastronomiastella.it

– Bread and cakes: Bread, fresh pasta and pizza, delicatessen and wine. Try the ricotta and spinach pie. Eat in or take away. De Rossi, 3, Corso Porta Borsari (near Piazza delle Erbe).

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