Posted by: gurglin | April 15, 2011

Some typical mistakes made by foreigners

1) NO, the course “bolognesa spaghetti” is not an Italian phrase (it is grammatically wrong), neither an Italian recipe, and I personally heard it for the first time either in England or Germany. It might be an American course, the light version of another spaghetti plate full of meat, the disgusting “meatball spaghetti”.

You can now find “spaghetti bolognesa” (probably spelled as “spaghetti alla bolognese”) on the menu of some cheap touristy restaurants in Italy as well, because it is what tourists ask for. In Italy there is something similar to it called “pasta al ragù”, which is prepared with egg pasta, not durum wheat spaghetti.

2) “Risotto” is rice with a sauce, any kind of sauce, more or less like pasta. One specific version of it, done in Lombardy, is called “Risotto alla Milanese”. This one is what foreigners call risotto, neglecting it is just one type of risotto, and not THE risotto.

3) No, in Italy almost nobody drinks wine while eating pizza. Only foreigners do that. We drink beer while eating pizza. ALWAYS.

4) Yes, you can expect people singing “O sole mio” for you in Venice or Rome as much as you can expect Andalusian flamenco dancers whistling for you Wagner’s “Ride of the Valkyries”.


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