Fine Dining And Contemporary Cuisine
When talking about fine dining, the first place to mention is Ristorante Giglio, a one-star Michelin restaurant in the heart of Lucca. Here you will find traditional flavors from the region reinterpreted as contemporary dishes. However, even being a Michelin restaurant, Ristorante Giglio doesn't want to be exclusive. The dining room is elegant and welcoming, and during summer, guests can sit outside and enjoy the view of the Giglio Theatre while the evening unfolds.
The Michelin-starred chef Cristiano Tomei, founded the Imbuto restaurant, in Limonaia (Lemon House) of the stunning Palazzo Pfanner. Chef Tomei has developed three tasting menus from which the clients can choose, and wines are equally accurately selected. During summer, it is possible to dine in the palace’s garden, and be surrounded by fountains, statues and greenery.
GO.DO. is a small bistro that fuses gourmet with street food. Flavours and ingredients from all over the world are mixed and matched, and there is something for everyone: from nasu dengaku eggplant to spicy chicken wings. They recently added a few tables outside, perfect for summer evenings.
Osteria del Manzo
If you want to go a slightly more traditional route, Osteria del Manzo is the place to go. The dining room is warm and furnished with taste, and the dishes are familiar but always with an exciting twist.
An honourable mention goes to Gigliola, a hybrid between gastronomy, a wine merchant and a restaurant. The founders are chefs from Ristorante il Giglio, and this is their social space. Here you can find a great selection of natural wines, delightful dishes, and the best bread in Lucca.
La Buca di Sant’Antonio
Allegedly founded in 1782 (perhaps even prior), La Buca di Sant’Antonio is one of Lucca’s oldest and most characteristic restaurants. Here you will find dishes from the tradition, like the farro soup and the famous tortelli lucchesi. Entering the restaurant, you will feel like you are stepping into someone's home, especially during cold months when the fireplace is lit. The dining room has various old tools and utensils that hang on the walls and from the ceiling, adding to the traditional atmosphere and making it unique.
Gli Orti di Via Elisa
Located next to the beautiful Villa Bottini, Gli Orti di Via Elisa offers dishes of the most classic Lucchese tradition assembled with local and fresh products. The menu follows the seasonality of the ingredients (with some unmissable stables) and it also comprehends pizza.
Trattoria da Giulio in Pelleria
This trattoria is located in what used to be the poorest Lucca neighbourhood. At Giulio in Pelleria you will find the traditional peasant cuisine, the one that every Lucchese grandmother has cooked for their family.
Pizzeria And Quick Bites
Ok, restaurants are nice and all, but are you even in Italy if you don’t eat pizza? Here are the ones you can’t miss when in Lucca.
Da Umberto - La Pizzeria Contemporanea
Da Umberto, you will find Neapolitan pizza made with high-quality ingredients and a gourmet feel. They have tables to sit outside in Piazza Napoleone, the main square of Lucca.
Located near the beautiful San Frediano Church, Pizzeria SUD also offers a selection of Neapolitan pizzas made with fine ingredients and lots of know-how. Gluten and dairy-free options are available.
Pizzeria Da Felice
If you are on the go and you want a slice of pizza, cecina (chickpeas flour pie) or castagnaccio (sweet chestnut flour pie) this is the place to go. Pizzeria da Felice has been in business since 1910 and is an absolute must for anyone visiting Lucca.
Perfect place for a sandwich, a salad or a tagliere of cold cuts and cheese. The service is fast and the quality of the produce is excellent. Ciacco is in Piazza Napoleone and has many outside tables to sit at and have lunch in the sun during the warm spring or autumn days. You can’t place a reservation, but waitings are usually not too long during the day.
Gino Frutta e Bistrot
Located in Piazza Santa Maria, Gino Frutta e Bistrot was born as a fruit and vegetable shop. Today it is also a wine shop and, during the summer months, a lovely bistro. The bistrot is open only at luch, and is the perfect place for a quick stop and for enjoyng traditional dishes cooked with super fresh produces.
In The Countryside
While it is a pleasure to eat dinner in the city centre or soak up the atmosphere while you enjoy a nice drink in one of the bars, visiting the countryside is equally worthwhile. Amongst the backdrop of the rolling Tuscan hills, you can find lots of places to enjoy a beautiful sunset and genuine cuisine. Here are our top picks for restaurants in the Lucca countryside.
La Cucina Dello Scompiglio
Tenuta Dello Scompiglio is an estate that produces wines, olive oil, vegetables, and fruits. The garden was founded in 2007, with the idea of sustainable production focused on respecting the balance of the soil and the environment, with vegetables mostly belonging to ancient, typical and local varieties. The dining area outside overlooks the vineyards, and the sunset here is something special. La Tenuta is also the promoter of several cultural projects.
Antica Locanda di Sesto
This warm, friendly, family-run inn with historic mediaeval origins has managed to retain its authentic, traditional ambience. Antica Locanda di Sesto offers delicious regional cuisine: beef with black pepper and rosemary is highly recommended for meat lovers, and all the pasta is homemade.
Vipore restaurant is situated in an old 18th-century farmhouse. The guests will dine immersed in the scents of spices and aromas, surrounded by vines, olive trees and all the greenery the countryside offers. The food is sincere and rooted in the local tradition.
Vino e Convivio
Just outside Lucca, Vino e Convivio is the best wine and liquor shop in the area. This is the perfect place to taste some wine and enjoy a small but well-curated selection of dishes.
Lucca has something for everyone, whether you're looking to try traditional cuisine or fine dining. There is a huge range of city centre spots and those in the surrounding countryside. If you’d like to find out more, be sure to read out our ultimate Lucca travel guide.
If you need help looking for accommodation, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with our local experts or browse our selection of handpicked villas to rent in Lucca.
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Only a few regions can offer such a beautiful and rich panorama as Chianti: green hills sketched by miles and miles of vineyards and olive groves, ancient walled villages, panoramic curvy roads.