Food & Wine in Agrigento
Food & Wine in Agrigento

Ultimate Agrigento Food and Wine Travel Guide

Close to the southwestern edge of the Italian island of Sicily, lies the beautiful city of Agrigento. This ancient town with roots that can be traced back to the time period of 580 BC has a rich Greek history that gave way to Italian influence over the centuries. This unique blend of Greek and Italian influences makes dining in Agrigento a fabulous experience for hungry travelers from across the globe.

The people of this area are fortunate to live in such close proximity to the Mediterranean Sea as they can enjoy delicious and freshly caught seafood fare on a regular basis. Seafood is often enjoyed on its own but is also an ingredient in many pasta-based dishes. Sundried tomatoes, olives, salted anchovies and even artichokes are often enjoyed for a snack or at mealtime.

Despite Agrigento’s Greek origins, this historic city practices many largely Italian traditions. Variations of pasta served with a number of different toppings still reign here when it comes to first courses. Sicilian pizza is a local and visitor favorite when it comes to street food, and delicacies from sweet pastry shops entice passersby with their beautiful window displays. And finally, no meal is complete without a glass, or a shared bottle, of locally made Sicilian wine.

In Agrigento you will find the modern-day city brimming with cafés, bistros, restaurants, and bars that range from luxurious to adorably authentic. As in most places in Italy, meals typically run an hour or two later than traditional American standards.
Restaurants are open for lunch hours and then generally shut down for the late afternoon resting period before opening again for the evening hours.

Whether you are touring the city of Agrigento on your own or with friends and family, enjoy the various courses of your meals with warm people, excellent wine, and much laughter. A good meal starts with fine food and ends with a pleasant feeling of satiety and appreciation for the culture.


One of the more traditional appetizer dishes of Agrigento is caponata. This heavenly mixture of sauteed vegetables typically includes tomato, olives, celery, onion, peppers, and eggplant. Here some locals even prefer to add spices such as cayenne and garlic and will also flavor it with honey, almonds, or sometimes raisins.

A version of sarde all beccafico often enjoyed in Agrigento is made from sardines that are fried and stuffed with a combination of raisins, lemon zest, pine nuts, and parsley. This is considered a traditional dish, although there are different variations served throughout Sicily.


First courses in Agrigento are largely based on the traditional Italian first course favorite of pasta. Various types of freshly homemade pasta are typically served up with eggplant, pistachios, and various types of locally caught fish. Pasta all’agrigentina is a more traditional pasta dish enjoyed by locals. It is similar to pasta alla norma, but features handmade cavatelli (cavateddri) pasta served with tomatoes, eggplant, onion, and ricotta salata.

In addition to pasta, soups are a popular first course dish in Agrigento. One excellent example is minestra di sicci, which is a soup made with cuttlefish that is enjoyed throughout Sicily’s southern coast.

Another local favorite is Taganu, which is native to the town of Aragona in the province of Agrigento. This savory pastry is filled with pasta, ragù, cheese, and eggs. Traditionally, the dish is prepared on Easter Saturday.

Regardless of what type of pasta, soup, or other dish you choose for a first course, enjoy and savor every bite, but be sure to save room for savory second courses with a finale of decadent dessert.


Second courses in Agrigento are deliciously protein based. Because of the city’s close proximity to the Mediterranean Sea, freshly caught seafood in the form of sardines, red snapper, and sole is widely enjoyed. Depending on the type of fish ordered, the dish can be served up in a variety of different ways, such as roasted, grilled, or sauteed, that span a number of diverse flavors. One unique seafood dish is called polpette di sarde. This hearty recipe consists of meatballs made of sardines, eggs, and breadcrumbs.

Those who are not partial to seafood can also generally find roasted rabbit, lamb, and goat meat on the menu paired with seasonal vegetables. While not as popular as rabbit, lamb and goat, other meats such as duck, pork, and sausage are usually available and are also generally served with a helping of locally grown vegetables.


Roasted and sauteed in-season vegetables make up the bulk of Agrigento’s side dishes with eggplants and artichokes featured prominently. U pitaggiu is a stew made with beans, peas, and artichokes that can be served with rice or it can also accompany meat dishes.


It would almost seem un-patriotic to have a city in Italy that did not serve pizza as a street food. Fortunately, pizza is a street food staple here in Agrigento, although it is usually quite different than what Americans consider pizza. One traditional version here is Sicilian sfincione, which features a thick dough topped with tomato sauce, cheese, and sometimes other ingredients. The unique final touch this pizza is known for is a toasted bread crumb topping.

Another street food favorite is arancine. This dish, which is a fried and stuffed rice ball, is a staple throughout Sicily. Typical fillings include mozzarella cheese, prosciutto, ragù, peas, and more.


Those that visit Agrigento often say that the desserts are the highlight of the cuisine here. With a number of cafés and pastry shops throughout the city, dessert is a must in this part of Italy. As in the rest of Sicily, almonds and pistachios are often used in some form of the local dessert offerings.

Perhaps the delicious traditional treat of cannoli is the most frequently requested dessert item here. Cannoli here showcase a wide variety of different and sometimes unusual flavors. It is not uncommon to hear a diner comment on the delightfully crispy shell and the luscious creamy filling. This sweet treat has been enjoyed in Agrigento for hundreds of years and will likely continue to be so for centuries more.

Semifreddo is a partially frozen creamy Italian dessert usually made with egg yolks, cream, and sugar. The treat comes in a variety of flavors and features local ingredients, such as crushed pistachios.

Although gelato is a frozen yet creamy treat enjoyed throughout much of Italy, many travelers claim there is just something special about enjoying a gelato in Agrigento. The gelato here comes in a variety of fabulous colors and mouthwatering flavors. Particularly on a hot summer day in the city, it is hard to beat walking the charming streets with a creamy gelato in hand.


The rural areas of the province of Agrigento lend themselves to dozens of vineyards that are dedicated to harvesting grapes and producing local wine. Some of the better-known wine varieties such as Contea di Sclafani, Sambuca di Siclilia, Menfi, Sciacca, and Santa Margherita di Belice all have the DOC designation.

Wine is an Italian tradition and is usually enjoyed during the lunch and dinner hours, and in between during an aperitivo. When dining out, speak with your server about how to pair the right wine with each of your courses for the ultimate Agrigento wine experience.

Agrigento’s rich cuisine is exemplary of Sicily’s excellent culinary tradition as whole. After a long day of exploring the Valley of the Temples, sit down to a delicious dinner featuring local specialties, such as cavatelli all’agrigentina and polpette di sarde, followed by a refreshing semifreddo.