Birra Moretti research unwraps festive dining traditions in Irish and Italian culture

Italians strongly prefer seated dining at an impressive 96% while 63% of Irish diners share a similar commitment to enjoying meals at the table

Heated debates are common at both Irish and Italian dinner tables with 56% of Italians and 51% of the Irish admitting to spirited discussions



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8 December 2023

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Birra Moretti has conducted research exploring the dining habits of Irish and Italian individuals during the festive season, uncovering insights into the cultural significance of shared meals and the distinct approaches to mealtimes in both countries.

Sitting down to a feast, regardless of the time of year, remains a vital part of the shared culture of conversation and coming together over a great meal with loved ones. Recent research highlights that Italian participants overwhelmingly adhere to tradition in their approach to mealtimes.

An impressive 96% of Italians and over two-thirds (63%) of Irish respondents expressed a strong commitment to dining traditions, choosing to dine at the table. Despite life demands preventing a seated dinner for 37% of respondents, the enduring belief that time spent with loved ones is valuable remains consistent across cultures.

In the post-COVID era, 39% of Italians and 49% of Irish respondents aim to dine with family or friends more than once a week. Notably, 21% of Italians have family dinners every night, reflecting the enduring importance of dinner time rituals for 49 million people in Italy.

Christmas dinners wouldn’t be complete without spirited debates, with 56% of Italians and 51% of Irish participants enjoying lively discussions all year round, making the dinner table a battleground for strong opinions.

Enjoying a glass of something special is a time-honoured tradition at Christmas in both Ireland and Italy. When it comes down to it, Italian respondents were more likely to embrace the long-standing tradition of pairing an alcoholic beverage with their meal, research finds.

While 70% of Italians enjoy a drink with their main meal, particularly embracing the aperitivo tradition, nearly half of Irish respondents (49%) do the same.

The Shared Table is a festive TV series by Birra Moretti, hosted by Eoghan Doherty, on Virgin Media player for a festive start to your Christmas season. Guests come together to savour good food, great beer, and delightful company, sharing life’s simple pleasures and exchanging favourite Italian notes.

Conor McIntyre, senior brand manager, Birra Moretti, said: “The research shows that our Italian counterparts put greater emphasis on sitting down and savouring their meal regularly, while Irish respondents relish family time when possible. Both cultures have traditions and priorities that revolve around a shared table, we can learn a lot from each other! As we approach Christmas with loved ones, the survey reminds us to slow down and embrace time with loved ones to pay homage to rituals around mealtimes.”

“ The Shared Table, our two-part TV series, returned to Irish TV screens this winter and to celebrate we commissioned this research into Irish and Italian dining habits. The show invites celeb guests to share great food, delicious drinks and great company and we wanted to translate that same ethos of enjoying life’s simple pleasures for viewers at home.”



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