Cagliari is the capitol of Sardinia, a buzzing old world metropolis loaded with character. The city is a great home base if you’re planning to take day trips to the beaches of Chia and Villasimius, or tour some of the southern wineries, like Argiolas and Audarya.
We started our adventures there, arriving in the morning and heading straight for the Carrefour, where we grabbed beach towels, a beach umbrella, a cooler, and stocked up on snacks and water.
Remember, we rolled on, so we needed to grab our beach gear locally.
Oh, and sunscreen. We fell in love with some sunscreen, one by Vichy and one by Garnier. Sadly, we can’t find either in the states.
After settling in our sub-par AirBnB (outstanding location, meh accommodations) we did a late lunch. Not a restaurant worth recommending; however ..
.. it was there that I first tasted the Is Argiolas and it was glorious! The Costamolino has long been my favorite Vermentino, but no longer.
We made our way up to Via Santa Croce, which is where we planned to spend our first evening in Sardinia: drinks and dinner in the Castello at sunset, overlooking the city.
Oh Aperol. Where have you been all of our lives?
Aperitivo at Libarium Nostrum, high up on the medieval ramparts of the city, was where we began our Sardinian love affair with the Aperol Spritz.
I’m convinced that one only drinks the Aperol Spritz in Italy, but if you must do it elsewhere, you can get the recipe from the experts and try your hand at it in the comfort of your own home.
So. If you’re not familiar, aperitivo is that golden hour (or two!) where one enjoys drinks and a light snack prior to the late dinner that is the norm in this part of the world.
Libarium Nostrum doesn’t take reservations for apertivo, but we had no problem finding a good table when we arrived around 1800. You can book a table for dinner, but we wanted to keep moving and followed up our aperitivo with dinner at Ristorante Pani e Casu.
My husband and I learned the hard way, when we visited Sardinia back in 2015, to book dinner reservations well in advance. Thankfully, Pani e Casu not only takes reservations, but I was able to make one over the phone between our broken Italian and English.
We discovered a gorgeous bottle of red wine here, Cannonau di Sardegna DOC Nepente di Oliena, from the Cantina Oliena that we continued to drink throughout our trip.
… and the girls experienced (and loved!) their first cinghiale!
Our second (and last) dinner in Cagliari was at the Pizzeria Cerere. I was able to book this reservation over Facebook.
You can believe the Yelp! and Trip Advisor hype .. the chef is a true artist and his pizzas are absolutely amazing. We felt right at home here, as both our chef and hostess were quite friendly and attentive. Grazie!
We had some other places to visit on our list, but ran out of time: Dulcis Pasticceria, Panino Rustico, the San Benedetto Market, and INU Winebar, to name a few.
Maybe you’ll have an opportunity to check them out for us when you visit Cagliari! Come back for more of Soaking up Sardinia,