Sicily is a kaleidoscope where the coming and going of peoples and cultures has created a multitude of traditions. During your yacht holiday to the island, pamper yourself with the island’s renowned pastries against the background of transparent sea and old temples.
Sicily and the art of pastry-making
Sicilians are traditionalists and the art of pastry-making revolves around the big classics. Cannoli with ricotta, babà and cream, almond and pistachio paste, almond milk, sorbets, and slushes are always high quality. And how about breakfast? Typical chocolate turnovers, fried (or baked) ravioli with ricotta, and iris, typical fried panini with a ricotta fill.
Sicily is also a land of famous Master Confectioners that have made Sicilian pastry-making renowned and appreciated all over the world. Read our tips of the best pastry shops in Sicily that will win your heart at the very first taste!
Corso Vittorio Emanuele III, 125 Noto (SR)
After a stroll on the sunny streets of the city, take a seat at the café located in Noto’s main street for a sip of marsala and a bite of delicious cassata. Established in 1892, Caffè Sicilia is a historical site and the standard bearer of Sicilian pastry-making. Here, Corrado Assenza, the Master Confectioner, makes almond, mulberry, and lemon slush, as well as cannoli, cassate, almond biancomangiare and faccioni di Noto. It’s not by chance that the café is thirtieth on Gambero Rosso’s 2015 list of italy’s best pastry shops!
Piazza Cairoli, 12, Messina
The second best “National Bar of Sicily” Bar Pasticceria Irrera is a must-visit stop for fans of pastry selling local delicacies made according to a century-old tradition. The pastries in Messina are less baroque than in Palermo, with very thin frostings, less candied fruits, and sifted ricotta. Pasticceria Irerra is known for its excellent cassata, but try also pignolata, almond slush, coffee and mulberry and the delicious frutta martorana, a kind of Sicilian pasta reale made with a mix of sugar, cinnamon, and almond mince and shaped like colored fruit.
Antica Dolceria Bonajuto
Corso Umberto I, 159, Modica (RG)
Can you really leave Sicily without having tasted cioccolato di Modica? Antica Dolceria Bonajuto is one of the top Sicilian pastry shops, where Franco Ruta, the son of Rosa Bonajuto, masterfully bakes cocoa paste. The sugar does not mix like syrup but retains its typical crystal-clear consistency, blending with the delicious aromas of vanilla, chili pepper, cinnamon, and salt.
Via Mariano Migliaccio, 39, Palermo
And now it’s time to have some cannoli, another proverbial Sicilian delicacy. When it comes to these and other typical pastries, Pasticceria Oscar is Palermo’s number-one institution. The high quality of the ingredients and the ability of the confectioners yield excellent results, the top one being cannolo siciliano, a true must with the clients.
Via Nuova Granatari, Torre Faro (Messina).
Pasticceria Eden in Torre Faro is one of Sicily’s best pastry-shops selling some of the most heavenly slushes of the island. The almond-flavored type can be found all-year long and is mostly sold to tourists, our recommendation is the black mulberry, jasmine, lemon, orange, or tangerine one that is definitely more special and true gourmandises!
Any holiday in Sicily on a luxury charter should include the tastes of the local pastry-making: intense and unique, they come from an esteemed tradition that has changed through time but has kept its best values and secrets intact.