To acquaint you with the typical Italian eating habits, following is a brief description of Italian customs concerning meals:
Breakfast (prima colazione)
Is continental and is available at the Kehoe Center. You will be served juices, tea or decaf coffee with milk and various breads, pastries, granola or yogurt. Occasionally instead of the roll you'll get sliced bread or dried toast (commercial). If you want or need to eat something in addition to this, you may buy groceries and store them in the Kehoe Center kitchen and refrigerator. Small stove-top coffee makers are available for purchase in town.
Lunch on your own
There are several choices available for lunch in Cortona:
- You may choose a regular restaurant where you sit at a table and are waited on. The price range varies from first-class full menu establishments to more inexpensive places where you may have a simple pizza or a plate of pasta.
- You may go to any of the bars in town and order a sandwich.
- You may go to one of the grocery stores that will prepare a sandwich of your choice for you.
- You may purchase groceries; bread, cheese and fruit, etc. and create your own lunch. Former students suggest visiting the Frutissimo for fresh fruit and vegetables on friday or saturday evenings after returning from field trips.
In Cortona, required group dinners are served at Tonino’s - one of the highest rated restaurants in Italy. As it is the only meal that the group takes together, it is served more like the typical Italian lunch, composed of:
- first course (primo piatto) of pasta or rice
- second course (secondo piatto) of meat with vegetables
- dessert: (frutta or dolce) fruit or cake or pie
Prices vary greatly, from the very expensive to the very affordable. In Cortona, smaller family-run restaurants are usually fairly inexpensive and they have a great advantage in that you can easily make friends there.
In many towns other than Cortona that the group visits on field trips, bars, pizzerias and restaurants are numerous and easy to find all over the historic areas.
Remember: if you sit down at a table in a regular restaurant, a cover charge is automatically added to your bill and you are also expected to tip your waiter (unless a service charge is built in.) In addition, sitting at a table means potentially long waiting times, since in Italy everything is cooked only after you order it.