Dining out with family is one of life’s greatest pleasures. Italians take both food and family time very seriously. Understanding the Italian way of dining out might help you make the most of your precious time with family. So, join us as we take you through some of our tips on dining out, Italian style!
As well as the arts, architecture and music, Italian culture is steeped in family and food. But ‘family’ isn’t just viewed in terms of the nuclear family as it is more commonly associated with here in Britain. Italians include their larger extended family in all their gatherings and get-togethers.
Don’t wait for special occasions
Food isn’t just nourishment for Italians, it is life. Extended family gatherings aren’t just reserved for birthdays and occasions, they’re a regular and intrinsic part of life.
So, take a page out of the Italian family album and don’t just wait for Christmas, birthdays and anniversaries. Use every and any excuse to have a good old get-together. Try to get the extended family together, too. And that includes friends and neighbours. Whether you have friends who you consider family, or just a small family, extend the invitation to others who could really do with it.
According to Age UK, 3.6 million older people in the UK live alone, of whom over 2 million are aged 75+. 1.9 million older people often feel ignored or invisible, and loneliness can be as harmful for our health as smoking 15 cigarettes a day. If this shocks you, why not take this opportunity to check on your elderly family members, friends and neighbours and invite them out for a meal? You could be doing so much more for them than simply making their day!
We have lots of space in our restaurant, including a spacious second floor with a rustic, traditional Italian feel. There’s lots on our menu that’s a hit with everyone, from the older members of your family to the bambinos. We also have a Set Menu which is great for larger groups to order from.
Set aside a good amount of time
Ever wondered why there’s more than just Starters, Mains and Desserts on an Italian Menu? Traditionally, Italian menus have five sections. A full meal usually consists of an appetiser, first course and a second course with a side dish. It’s not necessary to order from every course, but usually, people order at least two courses. Then there is dessert, of course!
Italians take their time, slowly enjoying each course while spending precious time with their loved ones. The average time Italians spend eating out is at least 2 hours but it usually goes on much longer. So, get all of your affairs in order so that you can set aside a good few hours for your family meal and enjoy every minute you have with them.
Eat lots and share!
Italian food is great for sharing, whether that’s antipasto or pizza. It’s simple but hearty, too. Explore new dishes together by sharing with other members of the family. It’s a great way to eat lots without getting too full. Enjoy the food not just by sitting together, but eating together, too.
Don’t leave the kids out
It can be stressful dining out with the younger members of the family, but this shouldn’t put you off. While it may seem so much more relaxing and convenient leaving the children with a babysitter, family time for children and connecting with the older members in the family is so important. Don’t be afraid of a little joyful chaos. Try to leave the electronics at home and encourage children to talk and get involved. It’s natural for children to get bored and restless, especially if you are taking heed of our advice and setting aside a good few hours for your meal out. To combat this, take a few interactive activities out with you – some colouring, small games or puzzles. Encourage young and old family members to get involved, you never know the joy and bonding that can ensue!
If you’re someone who gets frazzled at the thought of dining out with kids, you don’t have to worry about that at Pasta Di Piazza. Coupled with the tips above, we have a warm and welcoming atmosphere at our family-friendly restaurant in the Jewellery Quarter. We love seeing young and old bonding together over our delicious food so we welcome you to join us at Pasta Di Piazza with your families, big or small!