As tourist sight today as a market, Eataly has been a truly culinary game-changer to such an extent it’s now spawned outlets in other cities, including Rome, Italy. Encompassing a full city block, the enterprise was founded by Mario Batali (Babbo, Del Posto) along with Joe and mother Lydia Bastianich, and it’s a food court like no other—a true taste bud nirvana. Here you will find 12 different “eateries,” including one for vegetarians, one that concentrates on pastas, and an outdoor, top-floor Italian beer garden, Birreria, with retractable roof. Along with the eateries, you can browse various Italian foodstuffs like salami and cheese, fresh and dry pasta, meat, seafood, vegetables, wine, coffee, and much more. And get this: Those with kitchens can use the “vegetable butcher here.” You pick out whatever vegetable you need, and the on-site “butcher” cuts it to your specifications, making setting a healthy dinner together a snap.
- Pauline Frommer