Dining
Savor the fine food of Via Italia, Budapest’s own “Little Italy”
Photo : Pomo D'Oro
Savor the fine food of Via Italia, Budapest’s own “Little Italy”

It’s safe to say that Budapest has its own “Little Italy” now, located on downtown Pest’s Arany János Street – a dining quarter that was recently named Via Italia, endowed with a more unified and progressive image. Small signboards in the shape of a wine glass or an ice-cream cone indicate the character of each eatery, guiding us among the five members of the Italian restaurant complex. Gianni Annoni, the restaurateur behind the ever-popular Pomo D’oro and the founding honcho of Via Italia, took us on a tour of Via Italia, telling us about the wonders of this particularly tasteful neigborhood.

Trattoria Pomo D’oro Gastronomia Pomo D’oro Casa Pomo D’oro D.O.C. Vino Bar Gelateria Pomo D’oro

Trattoria Pomo D’oro

It all started 15 years ago with a truly traditional restaurant, where not only the ingredients come from Italy, but the expertise, too. The menu mostly features homey Italian dishes, with homemade pastas, and crispy thin-crust pizzas made in a wood-fired oven. Besides cherishing culinary customs, they are also sensitive to the new trends that show in their serving style. The wine selection is truly wide, featuring nearly 300 kinds of Hungarian and Italian wines. The restaurant was the first eatery in the country to receive the badge of the Association of Professional Italian Chefs, which reflects their deep respect for traditions – it’s no wonder that there have been so many regulars since the opening, both from the Italian community of Budapest, and from among Hungarians craving authentic Italian flavors. Nowadays it is rare for a restaurant to be mostly full of Hungarians, on a Saturday evening; this is something that Pomo D’oro is rightfully proud of. Despite the truly high-quality gastronomical value, the prices are not positioned towards the sky, which makes this place a favored locale for family or friendly gatherings, as Trattoria Pomo D’oro does not wish to join in the high-price contest of nearby bistros.
Trattoria Pomo D’Oro

Gastronomia Pomo D’oro

As the residents of Budapest came to appreciate the dishes of Pomo D’oro, many people wished to make Italian meals, or at least some elements of them, with original Italian ingredients. Gianni Annoni dreamed big, and – with an educational purpose – decided to smother the shelves of Gastronomia Pomo D’oro with authentic Italian foodstuffs, alongside premium cold cuts behind the counter, and expand the assortment with fish and seafood. We find everything that is high quality in this delicatessen, from the products of small Italian manufacturers to world-famous producers. Visitors have the chance to extract olive oil, and to purchase homemade pastas here. If you ever plan to prepare a big Italian feast for your family or friends, there is no question that the ingredients should be gathered from Gastronomia Pomo D’oro.
Gastronomia Pomo D'oro

Casa Pomo D’oro

The youngest member of the Via Italia family is Casa Pomo D’oro, a long-awaited locale among fans of Italian gastronomy. The chairs around the modern open kitchen and the monumental concrete work surface often fill up for thematic cooking nights, courses, and different events held here by professional Italian chef Alessandro Manna. Soon a Michelin-starred chef will make mouthwatering meals here, but the induction plates were very often heated up during the Bocuse d’Or cooking competition, too. In addition to all of that, the team often organizes gastronomic trips; in October, a small group is going to Tuscany to experience the region’s special gastronomy firsthand.

D.O.C. Vino Bar

Gianni Annoni already operated a wine bar in the past, but that wasn’t on Arany János Street. D.O.C. has gone through some changes since its opening; it was expanded, which made its atmosphere a bit more bistro-like, and this image will be further developed in the near future. We like tasting wines from their selection made up of more than 150 varieties while sitting on the spacious terrace. If you’d like to sip on wine amid a professional and pleasant atmosphere, we definitely recommend D.O.C. Vino Bar to enjoy libations from beyond the world of well-known Italian wines, along with a few extra specialties. To please the needs of foreign visitors, they also keep a few bottles of Hungarian products. As wine snacks, they offer cheese and ham selections. Naturally, the sampled wines can also be purchased on the spot.
D.O.C. Vino Bar

Gelateria Pomo D’oro

Ever since we tasted Gelateria’s pistachio di Bronte ice cream with some salty caramel and fior di latte for the first time, the ice-cream parlor of Via Italia has been a big favorite. The creamy concoctions and sorbets are made on the spot at the restaurant’s own confectionery, where other delectable desserts, such as sette veli, profitterol, and tiramisu also await guests. Gelateria Pomo D’oro is one of the very few places where one portion of ice-cream can be divided into two flavors, and it is almost obligatory to sample before making a choice here. Concerning their plans for 2016, they would like to make semifreddos and many more delicious cakes in the wintertime.
Gelateria Pomo D'oro