Italian cuisine has a special place in hearts (and bellies) across the world. In Italy, food preparation is a labour of love and chefs take their time in curating meals that will not only nourish the body but also please all your senses. Food in Italy is more than a lifestyle though. From risotto to polenta, gnocchi to pasta, it provides an insight into the history of Italian culture and society too.
The Romans were guided by an old maxim ‘Tell me what you eat, and I will tell you who you are’. The staple diet of the Romans consisted of wine, olive oil and bread, which were products of the earth. It showcased the importance of their values, where care and time was taken to cultivate, nourish and enrich the soil which they would then depend on for generations to come. Wine, olive oil and bread are still staples to many Italian households and restaurants.
After Italy became a collection of independent regions following the fall of the Roman Empire, each of these regions set out to define themselves with their cuisine, either with food or wines.
During the Renaissance period, food and wine were traditionally connected to social status, where banquets were for the privileged and wealthy. The rituals that surrounded eating food, drinking wine and interacting with the others on the table were often perceived as an art form. This is still largely evident across Italy as families and friends often share meals for hours over good conversations and wine with a hearty meal.
Over the years, Italian food evolved with time, as its history interlaced with trade and conquest. Practises like the custom of boiling dough in water, as opposed to baking it, formed during the Middle Ages, and is now a common element in restaurants around Italy and the rest of the world.
Bologna, for instance, passed an ordinance in 1982 stating the exact measurements and ingredients to follow when creating authentic ragù Bolognese!
Most often, sharing a traditional Italian meal is about the conversation and bond you form with your loved ones. The longer a meal lasts, when the conversation flows like the smooth wine, the better the experience and the longer the life you live. Enjoying the simple pleasures of a well-cooked meal, that is made with simple ingredients and is rich in taste, is part of the Italian culture and what we try to instil at AQUA Forte, our Italian restaurant in Sri Lanka.
Italian cuisine is about respect for the tradition, the art of creating a meal, love for the ingredients and passion for Italian products. From the quality of the ingredients to the fine wine that complements each flavour of your dish, the entire experience is made up of several key elements that contribute to the goodness of authentic Italian cuisine.
Italians use the finest and freshest ingredients to create a meal. The quality of these ingredients enhance the experience of enjoying an authentic Italian meal. At AQUA Forte, our ingredients like olive oil and cheese are imported directly from Italy, while fresh produce from fish to herbs are procured from local farmers and vendors in Sri Lanka.
The beauty of Italian cuisine is that an Italian dish is simple. Using only between 4-8 ingredients, the focus of our dishes remains on the taste and flavours of each dish, and not how elaborate it is. We pay great attention to how each ingredient subtly complements each other without overbearing a dish with too many flavours. As we say in Italy “anche l’occhio vuole la sua parte” that means that “also the eye wants its share”, so although simple we can’t forget the aesthetic aspect of plating.
When you combine quality ingredients, simple, traditional recipes from Italy with the expert guidance and passion of Head Chef Roberto, Chef Orlando and the team, you’re bound to get one result; great Italian food, in Sri Lanka’s historic Galle Fort.
AQUA Forte started from passion. Passion and love for Italian cuisine. Food is deeply rooted in Italian culture and because of the varying climates and environments of Italy, there are a huge variety of dishes and preparations that reflect the region’s character, ingredients, etc. Read more about the origin story of AQUA Forte. When preparing our meals, we infuse this passion and love into everything we create.
Traditional Italian food stems from Italian family life, where good food and shared memories are central to the experience. Our recipes stem from traditional recipes from Italy, some of which our Chefs learned to make with his own family back home. Find out more family secrets and traditional Italian recipes.
Mediterranean and Italian cuisines are often regarded as one of the healthiest diets in the world. Meals are cooked with olive oils, as opposed to other cooking fats. Olive oil is considered to be one of the most nutritious as poses several health benefits too. Additionally, meals are made using fresh produce, from herbs and vegetables to meats. There are no artificial ingredients or processed food; an Italian meal is made from scratch.
And to top it all off, a glass of Italian wine, to pair with your dish, completes your dining experience. When dining at AQUA Forte, we offer pairing suggestions that will perfectly complement your dish or meal. Our wines are imported from Italy, some of which are from UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Read more about the wines served at AQUA Forte.
Dine with us at AQUA Forte to truly appreciate and enjoy fine Italian cuisine. Embark on a sensory adventure of Italian art, culture and great food in Galle Fort, Sri Lanka.