Udine offers some of the best of Italian food and wine ("vino"), ranging from local Friulian cuisine (rustic/peasant style, typically found in small countryside restaurants) to superb fish coming in every morning fresh from the sea, and of course great Italian pasta and pizza. You will not want to go back to Pizza Hut after a dinner at Ciccio's...
Udine also has a long tradition of quality breweries. Beer is called "birra" in Italian, or "bire" in Friulian.
International, Chinese, Indian, Arab, African and other specialties are served at several locations, especially between the train station area and the city center.
The informal Friday evening at Ciccio's has become a Codex Alpe Adria tradition. There will be some changes for 2007, as Ciccio himself had to move to a new place (the fire department decided that the building was not safe :-) Because Ciccio is still closed as of July, we invited Ciccio and his family to be our guests for a pizza at a different place (Cantina Fredda, good friends of Ciccio).
Ciccio's pasta and pizza restaurant is friendly, simple, high quality, low budget and open minded. "Mr. Ciccio" and his family have the rare gift of making really everybody, including computer geeks, feel very welcome. The restaurant is not large enough to host the Saturday evening dinner, for which we also prefer to let you taste some Friulian cuisine, but we will visit it on Friday evening.
Ciccio makes you wonder whether their often understated style is natural or intentional. It is not only because Ciccio has no website, or because he is listed as a "bar" on the white pages (the telephone itself is coin-operated), or because the background music comes from a small radio... You have to see the place to believe it. You have to see his two sons and one daughter smile and joke even when they are overloaded with work. You have to see Ciccio himself, who speaks no "foreign", as he says, and knows nothing about "compiuteerss", when he gives out free meals (satisfying even the wish for an extra ingredient) to those who cannot afford one, or when he makes people who are a bit too loud be more polite not by calling police, but with his smile and wisdom, and by giving them more of what they want.
Ciccio's pasta is always perfectly "al dente", and about twice as much as you would expect in a normal restaurant. You can order a half portion if you wish. Ciccio's pizza is among the best in town, but you can enjoy it only for dinner (no pizza at lunch, because, he says, the more humid morning air isn't good for the pizza dough).
Eating and Drinking on Saturday
As the main Codex Alpe Adria event on Saturday moves from place to place with the event bus, we have scheduled stops which include a selection of local wines in Aquileia, followed by Friulian cuisine in Cividale for lunch, and world-renowned ham in San Daniele. The wine tasting is free, while the estimated cost of the lunch is under EUR 20.00.
Banquet on Saturday Evening
The official dinner will take place on Saturday evening at 20:30. This year's restaurant is al Vecchio Stallo (like in 2004), but we will as usual make arrangements to allow participation even to visitors without a car. On a Saturday evening it is especially important to make a reservation. May we ask that you kindly register for the dinner (expected cost all inclusive: EUR 18.00, please advise if vegetarian or other indications). If you haven't done so yet, please follow this link to register.
The Hotel Neighborhood
The neighborhood around Hotel President ("1" on the map) covers downtown in the South ("A" on the map indicates the castle hill), and the event bus stops. Bus line 4 from the train station stops in via Cividale, almost in front of the hotel.If you walk from the hotel ("1" on the map) towards the castle ("A" on the map), you will find a wide selection of bars and restaurants along the way and behind the castle hill.