Verona, Ti Mangio

Walking around Verona was very cool for me. Because my father and I had done an Italy trip for wine research in the Valpolicella region 6 years ago, I had a relatively good memory of the city. I walked around the city, remembering wine shops that we went to and squares that we sat and had a beer at. A couple of interesting things that I learned about Verona from the walking tour, however, were that Veronese people generally vote right and that the new Mayor is actually the ex-Italian footballing legend, Damiano Tommasi.

The coolest part of Verona for me was probably exploring the food of the region. First of all, I read about this tiny inconspicuous coffee joint in the city center that was said to have the best coffee and boy did it live up to the hype. Then, I found this little hole in the wall restaurant tucked into an alley that ended up having some of the best food on the trip. We had rabbit pesto fettuccine, horse bolognese, and raw horse meat. The food was fantastic, but the problem with the restaurant was the culture of the service. It wasn’t the peoples’ fault, but every time I asked for the next round, the waiter would tell me “wait, wait, have patience” and get a little upset. We ended up being there for three hours both times we went. I guess turning tables isn’t really part of the culture LOL.

Another highlight of the city was our experience going out to the local bars. We went out on a Thursday night to a crappy bar next to the university. It happened to be karaoke night that night, and it managed to attract all kind of rather interesting characters. We heard people sing all kinds of songs in Italian, English, Spanish, and Portuguese as they got drunker and drunker. Eventually, Chris and I got drunk enough to sing “Born in the USA” by Bruce Springsteen. It was so much fun. AND we were introduced to the Italian anthem “Sarà perché ti amo”. It is just this upbeat, happy song that sounds like it’s from the ‘80s that everyone seems to scream at the top of their lungs.