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Flavours and aromas in Sanremo
A gastronomic guide

The Sanremo cuisine is redolent of the Mediterranean, ranging from the highly prized Sanremo prawn to the sea bass, from pesto to sea bream and tuna. This culinary tradition draws inspiration from the land, which gives life to dishes expressing the multifaceted identity of the region. The sea, the mountains and unkempt nature provide essential raw materials for a cuisine that bravely blends tradition and experimentation.

This is the case for pesto, the famous Ligurian sauce whose characteristic scent of garlic, oil, basil and pine nuts runs through the Ligurian cuisine. The main condiment of trofietrenette and numerous varieties of pasta, pesto sauce has an ancient origin that is still handed down from generation to generation. Fish is often the key ingredient in Ligurian cuisine, ranging from lean cappon – used to eat up leftovers – to stock-fish. There are also many vegetable-based dishes, from string-bean meatloaf to savoury pies such as the pasqualina cake – an Easter favourite – and borage pie. And finally focaccia: a real institution in the entire region.

Traditional Sanremo gastronomy is based on simple ingredients that are the key element of tasty dishes. The Sardenaira, with tomato sauce, capers and anchovies is the ancient pizza of Sanremo, recommended for a quick snack with a green cake, made with rice and seasonal vegetables wrapped in thin pastry. The Ligurian fish is stewed with pine nuts, olive oil, Taggiasca olives and rosemary, and comes served with potatoes or fresh seasonal artichokes, while raw fish is becoming a trend.

If you love shellfish, on the other hand, you can’t miss purple shrimp, a typical Sanremese dish. The unmistakable trait of this delicacy is the purple colour of the head and long whiskers. The unique taste is due to the plankton on which these shrimps feed. The best way to enjoy them is to eat them raw, combined with the accomplished local white wines.

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