Turin's Quadrilateral Romano Neighborhood

Plus, tips on aperitivi and a great neighborhood restaurant

Restaurant in the Quadrilateral neighborhood of Turin

The Quadrilateral old town of Turin/Torino, just off Piazza Castello is the trendy, nightlife heart of Turin.

This vibrant district, alive with the echoes of centuries, immerses visitors in a sensory tapestry of sights, sounds, and flavors. Stroll through bustling markets where the air is perfumed with the aroma of fresh produce and the lively banter of vendors creates a symphony of market sounds. From artisanal cheeses to locally sourced truffles, the Quadrilatero's market stalls offer a gastronomic journey through Piedmont's culinary delights.

The Quadrilatero Romano isn't just a neighborhood; it's a living canvas that seamlessly blends history and modernity. Amidst its medieval charm, find contemporary art galleries, boutiques, and innovative eateries. Uncover hidden gems, from quaint bookshops to chic boutiques, each adding to the district's dynamic personality.

As the sun sets, Quadrilatero locals and visitors converge in its cozy cafes, lively bars, and traditional osterias. The area comes alive, and its many restaurants and bars are packed full of locals enjoying a little "dolce vita." There is a youthful energy about the neighborhood, with students from the nearby university and from the Polytechnic University of Turin enjoying a break from their studies.

Get here in the early evening, and you'll find the local bars full of people enjoying that great Turin tradition, the aperitivo. Find yourself a spot too, and order. And, in case you're wondering, what drinks are typically served during aperitivo? These are the ones to try: 

Americano: The Americano is a classic aperitivo that originated in Turin. Made with equal parts Campari and sweet red vermouth, topped with soda water and garnished with an orange slice,

Negroni: A classic that needs no introduction, the Negroni is a more potent version of the Americano, replacing the soda water with gin. Comprising equal parts gin, red vermouth, and Campari, this cocktail is garnished with an orange slice or twist.

Barolo Chinato: This unique and regional aperitivo showcases Piedmont's Barolo wine infused with a blend of herbs, spices, and cinchona bark. 

Vermouth: Turin is hailed as the birthplace of vermouth, a fortified wine infused with botanicals. Vermouth has become an integral part of the city's aperitivo scene, enjoyed in various styles. Whether served neat, on the rocks, or as part of cocktails like the classic Negroni or the Turin-born Americano, vermouth embodies the essence of a leisurely pre-dinner drink. 

Spritz: While originating in the Veneto region, the Spritz has firmly established itself as a beloved aperitivo choice in Turin. Typically made with Prosecco, Aperol or Campari, and a splash of soda, this refreshing concoction is garnished with a slice of orange. The Spritz has become synonymous with convivial gatherings, its bright color and effervescence embodying the lively spirit of Turin's aperitivo culture. It's a popular choice for those seeking a light and bubbly pre-dinner drink to enjoy with friends.

Time for Dinner @ the Tre Galline - Via G. Bellezia, 37

Right in the heart of the Quadrilateral neighborhood is the Tre Galline restaurant, which dates back to 1575 and has seen it all. The restaurant is just as popular as ever and is still sticking to its roots by offering excellent Piedmont fare.

The prices are not the cheapest, but the quality is invariably optimal, although the service can be a little patchy. On a busy night, they sometimes seem a little overwhelmed.

This is a good place to sample the bollito misto or the fritto misto, two of the hallmark dishes of Piedmont cuisine. However, let me warn you that the bollito misto is only for those who love garlic. They don't always have bollito misto on the menu, though; it is more of a winter thing.

A good idea is to try their tasting menu. It consists of around six courses for 60 euros and will give you a very good idea of what Turin's cuisine is all about.

If you do go for the tasting menu, then ask them to recommend a wine; actually do that no matter what you order. They really know exactly which wines go with which dish, and my advice is to follow their recommendations.

The dishes and wines have been similar here for centuries, and they know the pairings better than many top wine experts. I visited with a top wine expert from Australia, and he was amazed. He said there was no way he could have chosen so well.

Their wine collection is huge and one of the best of any restaurant inTurin. The collection of Piedmont wines is exhaustive, as is the collection of Italian wines from other Italian regions, with literally thousands of Italy’s best wines on offer. 

I have enjoyed many a dinner in this restaurant and can thoroughly recommend it. The proof of just how good it is can be confirmed by the fact that after well over 400 year it is still going strong.

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