Genoa was one important trade port of the Mediterranean. Ships loading and unloading precious cargo. Spices, too.
So the tradition of fine exclusive sweets was introduced long time ago.
What to buy: In this beautiful shop I bought violets covered with sugar and rosewater pearls. Delicate and aromatic, something special to remind me of Genoa.
Hmm, this is what I really love, fine fresh and moderately expensive fishes & crabs. It is, however, too much if asking 26€ for the wild orata (orata nostrana), should cost around 20 euros, not more then that. The other guy have put the price of 10€ for "orata nostrana" but there must be something wrong about it. Or this is breeded orata or it's not fresh at all.
Even calamari (squid fish) cost too much, I would never pay 14€ for calamari from Mare Ligure, what then here could cost calamari from the Adriatic Sea, the best calamari that excisting?
What to buy: I suppose its possible to burgain the prices for the fishes, especially if buying more then 1 kg. Good chances to reducing prices is if coming here and buy after 1 or 2am, the next day this fish doesn't worth much so they must sell it the same day.
There may be an area with glitzy designer shops in Genoa but I wasn't looking for it so I didn't find it. Instead, we wandered around the ancient historic centre and were fascinated by the different food shops. There were shops selling all manner of spices that my limited Italian could not translate, bottled and bagged and crammed into every available space in the tiny shops. There were fishmongers selling some of the freshest fish available, only some of which I recognised. There was a lovely shop selling fresh pasta where I bought some trofie genovese and pasticciarias selling pandolce.
What to buy: If you can, buy some fresh pasta - especially the handmade trofie. Pesto is one of the more famous exports - be sure to try it at least once.
What to pay: A half kilo of trofie cost a little over €3 - well worth it for the amount of effort put into making this type of pasta.
vegetables, oil, fruits, food from several producers of the surroundings
What to pay: I guess it's not cheap... never bought anything but tasted a lot as they often provided food for "vernissage" at the "stanza della poesia" just on the side.