We had a recent break to Genoa, a wonderful City with a heritage bigger than Venice. Did you know our England Flag, the St Georges Cross was bought from Genoa during the first Crusades? By flying the Genovese flag the Crusaders ships were given safe passage across the Mediterranean Sea. Such was the power of Genoa at the time.
I don’t know how many times I heard the locals say they’d like it back as it was only a loan.
The Genovese love a happy hour and when you buy a drink during this time you get free tapas, which I have to say were really good. Salami, Cheese and of course something with Pesto.
The big thing in Genoa is Pesto, it’s everywhere and it’s different in each restaurant, deli and shop. They grow over 60 varieties of Basil and it has Protected Designation of Origin Status. We tried it in several restaurants, to be trueful you can’t avoid it, it’s on every menu with at least with three different pastas. Best for me was at Cavour 21, trattoria Genovese. Barbara the owner and front of house was charming.
Maybe this helped sway my judgement but it was also one of most resonably priced restaurants we visited.
The secret is getting the right mix of basil, to garlic, pine nuts, Pecorino or Parmasan and of course the finest olive oil. How it is proportioned changes with the seasons I was told.
Simple but delicious recipes here splendidtable
You can buy it from here, it’s really easy to make but it won’t Genovese Pesto. The Gazzano sauce is very good as is Carluccios.
Everywhere you look in Genoa there are Protected Status foods, from all over Italy and I’ll be discussing these soon.