The 10 Best Restaurants In Bologna's Centro Storico, Italy

Carlotta Bosi

Bologna is the main city of the impossibly wonderful Emilia-Romagna region, a land well known for its many culinary specialties and treats. Try them in one or more of these wonderful locations, all to be found around the main square of the town’s famous Centro Storico.


1. Bolpetta

Restaurant, Italian, European, Vegetarian, Vegan, Gluten-free

tagliatelle bolognese
© valakirka/Flickr
Bolpetta is a restaurant that features every kind of culinary ball imaginable. Everything, except for the French fries, is served in the shape of a ball, from appetizers to desserts. You can find the eternal classic meatball as well as vegetarian options to boot. Ideal for a lunch among friends, Bolpetta offers sharing menus too.

2. Osteria dell'Orsa

Osteria dell’Orsa

At Osteria dell’Orsa, rustic and cheerful, customers will be seated on long benches at bulky old wood tables, all lit up by old lamps hanging from the ceiling. Go here to have fun, and have a good laugh with friends in pure Italian style. At lunch you can expect to see a lot of students taking long breaks between their university classes, while dinnertime sees crowds accumulating at the front door (this one doesn’t take reservations!).

Address and telephone number: Osteria dell’Orsa, Via Mentana 1, Bologna, Italy, +39 051 231576

3. Teresina


Little and colorful, thanks to the many paintings hanging on the walls, Teresina welcomes customers with a mortadella appetizer and features traditional Bolognese dishes. Customers that are not into meat can taste excellent fresh fish, while the desserts deserve a special mention too. The decor is relaxed and laid-back, and the half al fresco terrace area is really worth the trip during the summer months.

Address and telephone number: Teresina, Via Oberdan4, Bologna, Italy, +39 051 228985

4. Osteria del Sole

Wine Bar, Wine, Beer, Cocktails, Pub Grub, Italian

Osteria del Sole is situated right behind Piazza Maggiore, and since this very characterful restaurant is actually an osteria, there is no meal without wine, of which a wide selection is available. Customers can find their place at the big wooden tables, and enjoy the jovial atmosphere in this historic landmark of Bologna. Check out the posters on the bright yellow walls, marking the history of this truly unmissable and traditional place.

5. Trattoria Battibecco

Trattoria Battibecco

Elegance and design mix with tradition at Trattoria Battibecco. Traditional elements of Bolognese cuisine are re-vamped with unexpected ingredients and presented with extreme care. The names of the dishes are also creative and worth a look in their own right. Despite the modern setting, the atmosphere is warm and welcoming, complete with a dash of classic Italian homeliness.

Address and telephone number: Trattoria Battibecco, via Battibecco 4, Bologna, Italy, +39 051 223298

6. Da Nello

Restaurant, Italian, Mediterranean, Soup, Vegetarian

© SeraTJ/Flickr
High-quality and tradition are the two key words which describe this little restaurant. The warm environment at Da Nello, made cozier by the many pictures on the wooden walls depicting the establishment’s history, welcomes customers perfectly. Guests can also enjoy little cubes of mortadella as an appetizer, perhaps followed by a generous serving of lasagne. For a side dish, a wide choice of fried vegetables of every kind is available, and the restaurant also offers daily specials to boot.

7. Ristorante Pappagallo

Restaurant, Italian, Mediterranean, European, Vegetarian

A few steps away from the Torre degli Asinelli, this historic restaurant, established in 1919, succeeds in bringing together modernity and tradition, elegance and excellent flavors. Ristorante Pappagallo offers a wide variety of dishes to choose from along with great wines. Customers unfamiliar with the local cuisine can choose between two different tasting menus – a traditional one, with typical Bolognese dishes, and a more modern one that leaves space for the chef’s own creativity. Both are excellent.

8. Vicolo Colombina

Vicolo Colombina

At Vicolo Colombina it isn’t just the place and the dishes that attract the loyal following of locals, but the whole aesthetic of the space itself. It doesn’t just look beautiful, the food is also delicious. Customers can taste home-made tortellini and a whole other selection of traditional dishes presented as if they were the latest culinary invention. The perfect combo of innovation and tradition.

Address and telephone number: Vicolo Colombina, Vicolo Colombina 5/B, Bologna, Italy, +39 051 233919

San SilvestroSan Silvestro | Courtesy of San Silvestro

9. San Silvestro

Restaurant, Italian, Mediterranean, European, Vegetarian

This modern restaurant has a great view of the streets of the Centro Storico, especially in the summer, when customers can eat outside and enjoy the hot and sunny weather. But the view is just one perk of the dining at San Silvestro. High-quality food and service abound and customers can taste both traditional dishes or creative experiments, such as the pera sfumata al vino e canella, all in generous servings and exquisitely plated.

10. Trattoria Gianni

Restaurant, Vegetarian, Italian

While strolling the streets of Bologna, this characterful restaurant can be found right on the path between Piazza Maggiore and the Torre degli Asinelli. At Trattoria Gianni customers can enjoy tasty local food presented with modern plating presentation, all while in a rustic setting surrounded by a warm environment and friendly staff.
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