8 Oct 17 at 2:58 PM #11515Michael HorneKeymaster
I’ve had many requests for some of my favorite restaurants in Rome, and I thought I’d share my “favorite eight” with fellow travelers.
I visit Rome a few times a year, visiting friends, coffee roasters, and just enjoying time in the Eternal City. I try to focus on uber-local Osterias and Trattorias that create wonderful Roman dishes that are typical of Rome. I also go to places that are off the touristic track, ideally where only locals go.
Here are my favorite Roman restaurants, in the order that I would hit them when I’m in town. Since these places are small and tend to attract the Roman locals in droves, be sure to make a reservation or you will likely be turned away. Have your hotel call to make a reservation, or call them yourself (most speak English well). You can also email in advance, but they don’t always respond — I recommend calling if possible. Note that almost all of these are closed on Sunday, like all of Rome’s best and most affordable restaurants. If one place is full, go to the next one on the list.
Don’t forget that lunch is usually served 12:30 – 2:30 PM and dinner 7:30 – 11 PM. Try and get in outside of these hours, and you will be sadly disappointed.
Here are my top 8 picks. Share your own best recommendations by replying to this Forum post below.
- Armando al Pantheon — very local trattoria just a stone’s throw from the Pantheon. They’re always full, so you must make a reservation in advance. Open for lunch Monday-Saturday, dinners Monday-Friday. Salita dei Crescenzi #31, Tele: +39.06.6880.3034, armandoalpantheon.it.
- L’Asino d’Oro — a justly famous place with locals and travelers in-the-know, this is a tiny place with a tasty daily menu sourced in the local area. Open for lunch and dinner Tuesday-Saturday, closed Sunday and Monday. Reserve by phone only. Via del Boschetto #73, Tele: +39.06.4891.3832, Facebook page.
- Pizzeria da Remo — fantastic wood-fired pizza joint in Testaccio, this place is always packed but people crank through their pizza pies pretty fast, so just show up and wait your turn. Open late till 1 AM for dinner only, Monday-Saturday. Piazza di Santa Maria Liberatrice #44, Tele: +39.06.574.6270, Facebook page.
- La Matricianella — everybody loves this place, and it shows when you try to make a reservation. They do take people off the street, you just need to be patient. Wonderful local Roman dishes. Open lunch and dinner Monday-Saturday, closed Sunday. Via del Leone #4, Tele: +39.06.683.2100, matricianella.it.
- Grappolo d’Oro — fantastic osteria right in the center of things, ingredients for the evening’s meals are sourced from the nearby markets. Always full, and worth the effort to reserve a place. Very nice wine list. Try the spaghetti alla carbonara for me. Open for lunch and dinner 7-days a week, except dinner only on Wednesday. Piazza della Cancelleria #80, Tele: +39.06.689.7080, hosteriagrappolodoro.it
- L’Osteria di Birra del Borgo — Close to Vatican city, this is a fine place for a classic Roman meal with locally brewed beer (and Lazio wine, of course). Modern, funky and fun. Open late 7 days a week, from noon to 2 AM. Via Silla #26, Tele: +39.06.8376.2316, osteria.birradelborgo.it.
- Alfredo e Ada — this is a no-frills joint that has cheap eats and great local dishes. Easy to find in the centro storico. Check out the old-timey photos. Open for lunch and dinner Tuesday-Saturday, closed Sunday and Monday. Via dei Banchi Nuovi #14, Tele: +39.06.687.8842, Facebook page.
- Trattoria da Cesare — I list this one though it’s away from the centro storico, and you need to catch a light rail to get to it, or take an Uber or a taxi. The trek is worth the time. You won’t find a tourist here because they don’t know it exists (except you!). Yes, they speak English. Fabulous wine list, drink up. Open 7-days for lunch and dinner, except closed on Wednesday. Via del Casaletto #45, Tele: +39.06.536.015, http://www.trattoriadacesare.it
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