Food? Gelato? Coffee?
As a food lover, I (very) often get asked what is my favourite gelateria or restaurant in Rome, the best place for a coffee break or cocktail. I decided to write this article not because I am tired of writing the same list over and over again, but because I genuinely believe that these places are that good that they deserve free advertising and, most importantly, you deserve to enjoy their delicious products.
- Piatto Romano – this is my absolute favourite! It is a typical Roman restaurant, away from the centre but not too far; definitely super worth going there for dinner. Make sure you book a table. Also it is not expensive. The owner-chef selects the best ingredients for his food and this is just one of the many reasons I love this place. Bonus tip: try their rigatoni con la coda alla vaccinara, it’s a traditional pasta dish from Rome!
- Sciue Sciue – it is actually a Napoletan restaurant in Monti. They make very good pasta and it’s a lovely place for lunch after you visited the Colosseum, the Fori Imperiali and Piazza Venezia. Bonus tip: try their cacio e pepe pasta!
- Cuoco e Camicia – not traditional Italian food. This restaurant offers a rather creative perspective of traditional recipes. It is a bit more expensive than the other two recommendations and it is definitely a dinner place. They only use sustainable local sources for their ingredients and change the menu often to make the best out of each season. Bonus tip: their meat selection is delicious!!
- Gelateria dell’Angeletto – this gelateria is literally in the heart of Monti and it is in my Top 2 favourite gelaterie in Italy (the other one is in Bologna). When I first moved to Rome three years ago, I lived 2 minutes away from there and I was having one or two gelati per day, everyday. It is that good! Bonus tip: have the pistacchio one, you’ll fall in love!
- Cremilla – you can find this gelato shop inside the Mercato Centrale (Termini Station). Their gelato is a bit sweeter than my normal preference, but it is well done and they have great flavours. Bonus tip: you should most definitely try the brownie one!
- Otaleg – although quite far from the city centre, this gelateria is really a gem. The gelataio is a very creative person and always combines different flavours in very unique ways. Bonus tip: they usually have salty gelato too, so check it out!
- Bar Monti – I love this place because their coffee is really nice. Although it is almost always full, the staff moves fast and makes delicious foamy coffee! Bonus tip: they are one of the few bars with an outside terrace.
- Caffe Sant’ Eustachio – although the way they make coffee is not Roman, you must definitely have one here! They use their own coffee and they make this special Napoletan sugar foam they can add to your cup. Bonus tip: make sure you have a Gran Caffé zuccherato (with sugar)! Even if you don’t usually take your coffee with sugar, this is the special sugar foam I was talking about above and you have to try it!
- Mercato Centrale – did I mention that this place has a bar as well? And that their coffee is super nice? When you get into Rome, whether by train or plane, Termini is where you will first set foot. The Mercato Centrale’s bar has very good coffee and you can sit down with no extra charge! Bonus tip: try their cappuccino! It’s super foamy and nice.
One general tip for coffee/bars in general in Italy – if you drink your coffee, cappuccino, water etc. sitting down at a table, you will most probably be charged more. If you don’t want to pay more for sitting down, you just have to go to the bar and drink it there. However if you decide to sit down and pay extra, make sure you ask first to see the menu for the sitting down prices. Some places charge double or triple for the same order simply because you are being served at the table.
Cocktails – if you love cocktails like I do, head out to Libro di Vino (Via degli Zingari, 49). They put a lot of attention into making them great and the prices are not too high either. Also from Friday to Sunday they usually have an aperitivo from around 7 until 9pm and the place itself is super cute.
Pizza – I’m sure you have already figured out that I am more of a pasta kind of gal, but I also like pizza. Since we’re talking about Rome, you should have Roman pizza, not the traditional round Napoletan one. My favourite one is from La Boccaccia. It’s literally the best pizza romana I have ever had, and I tried so many of them. The pizza romana is a great street food choice for when you are on the go or when you don’t want to spend too much money for lunch or dinner.
As you can see, most of the places I have recommended are in the Monti or Termini areas. This is because I consider these two very easy to reach. They are part of the centre, but not the very very touristic side of central Rome. In a city where there are tourists all year round, it can be very difficult to find places that make authentic and quality food, that also don’t charge an arm and a leg.
Let me know in comments if you try any of these places and tag me in your Instagram photos. I want to see what you had! 🙂
Stay hydrated and keep traveling!