Pesto Genovese

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Pesto alla Genovese

Pesto - Pesto Sauce
Pesto - Linguine with PestoPesto - IngredientsPesto - Handmade Pesto Sauce

The Pesto Genovese is probably one of the most famous Italian sauces!

The word pesto means literally to crush, from the Italian pestare. The name reflect the way pesto sauce is traditionally made: all the ingredients are in fact ground together in a marble mortar with a wooden pestle. 

The recipe derived form the roman Moretum, a sauce very popular at the time. However among the ingredients of the original recipe there were mixed herbs instead of the basil used today. The reason was that basil wasn’t yet cultivated in Europe. When it was imported from India many farmers started to grow it especially in the Liguria region.

When the Ligurian began to cultivated the basil they adapted the roman recipe and create the today world famous pesto alla genovese. They combined basil, garlic, pine nuts, Parmigiano-Reggiano and/or Pecorino cheese and EVOO.

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Who still follow the original recipe put in the marble mortar first pine nuts and garlic, that are ground with a circular motion until they became a paste, then the basil is added with a pinch of sea salt; when the mixture become smooth again the cheeses and EVOO are added.

However during the centuries every genovese family have developed its own pesto recipe!

Many add string beans and potatoes cooked together with the pasta.

The Pesto Genovese is traditionally used on trofie or linguine.

Private Genoa Food Tour

Genoa - Caruggi - Salita Superiore San Rocchino
Genoa - Piazza De Ferrari - FountainGenoa - CaruggiGenoa - Caruggi - StreetGenoa - Caruggi - StairsGenoa - Piazza De Ferrari - Bronze FountainPesto - Handmade Pesto Sauce

From: $49.04

tour duration

2 Hours

start time

10:00 AM

Mon, Tue, Wed, Thu, Fri, Sat


meeting point

Old POrt, more details at booking




Meet your private guide at the designated area in the characteristic Old Port where your Private Genoa Food Tour will start!

Your tour will lead you through the narrow streets of Genoa’s Caruggi area on an exploration of the city’s most famous old shops that sell the typical Italian street food. Stroll through the charming Caruggi’s old alleys is a unique experiences; here the time stopped long ago and you will find yourself wondering around little old “botteghe” (shops) that have been probably around for decades!

Your guide will help you to discover this characteristic district; you will pass through a typical open air market in which you will be able to discover many regional delicatessen, understanding the kind of fresh products that grow in the area and that are an essential part of the Ligurian cuisine!

Your next stop will be a little shop where you will be introduced to the most popular local dishes. Here you will finally start your tasting! You will be offered pesto bruschette, classic bruschette with EVOO, typical cold cuts with Farinata di Ceci and mouth-watering fragrant fried fishes!

At the end of your tasting your tour will continue until you will reach Piazza De Ferrari. Here your tour will end. We suggest you to keep exploring this beautiful city that has so much to offer to its visitors!


– Expert local English speaking guide

– Tasting


– Piazza De Ferrari

– Caruggi

– Old Port

– Confirmation will be received at time of booking

– Voucher and detailed operator information, including local emergency numbers will be received three weeks before the date of your tour.

– The dress code for men and women is strictly enforced in churches. No shorts, bare shoulders or miniskirts. You may risk refused entry if you fail to comply with these dress requirements.

– Adult pricing applies to all travellers.

Departure point:

Old Port, more details at booking

2 hours

Return details:

Piazza de Ferraris