Rome, the Eternal City, is not only renowned for its rich history and breathtaking architecture but also for its delectable culinary scene. Italian cuisine is celebrated worldwide, and Rome stands at the heart of this gastronomic paradise. From traditional trattorias to trendy eateries, the city offers an array of culinary delights that will leave food lovers in awe. Join us as we embark on a mouthwatering journey to discover the best places to eat in Rome.
The restaurants below are not fine dining, Michelin star locations. These are fantastic local eateries run by people with big hearts that are ready to make you feel at home. It is important to make reservations ahead of time if you are going during peak season. Even in November, I was calling ahead to set up reservations. After 8pm, these restaurants are very busy and many of them don’t open until 7pm because the Italians eat dinner late.
Mastrociccia – Osteria Bistrot at Via del Governo Vecchio, 76, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
Mastrociccia is one of the best small restaurants in central Rome. Located near Campo de Fioiri and Piazza Navona makes this gem easily accessible. The staff is wonderful, the pasta dishes are great, and the tiramisu is amazing. I have eaten here a few times and personally love the carbonara and tiramisu here! When I took my big group here, they gave us a complimentary digestivo limoncello after the meal too.
Origano Campo De’ Fiori at Largo dei Chiavari, 84, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
This was my first meal when I arrived in Rome, Italy for the first time in 2019. Their pasta is fresh and absolutely delicious. Over my many visits with different people, this one has been a favorite for everything. I personally love the cacio e pepe with artichokes but can also vouch that the pizza and other items on the menu are wonderful. You should definitely give Origano a try.
Rimessa Roscioli at Via del Conservatorio, 58, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
Now this isn’t exactly a restaurant but I did their wine and food pairing with a group. This experience was a meal in itself. We had dinner reservations after this and ended up canceling them because we were all so full. There are multiple courses from cheese to pasta and quite possibly the best tiramisu I’ve ever had in my life. I highly recommend booking this experience ahead of time. There is a restaurant as well that you can book separately. I haven’t done that personally but if it is anything like this wine and food pairing course, it must be amazing!
AI Balestrari Campo de Fiori at Via dei Balestrari, 41, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
This little restaurant was tucked right next door to my Airbnb one visit. I found the value to be a great quality. The prices were great and I really enjoyed the pasta and suppli here. Their roman style pizza is great and the house red are so tasty. Dinner for two with appetizers, entrees, a half bottle of wine, and dessert ran me about 50 Euros.
Pizza Al Taglio:
Pizza al Taglio means by the slice. When you pop into a Roman pizza shop you will see long rectangles of fluffy, crunchy pizza with a variety of toppings. They are cut with scissors and priced by weight. You could easily get two pieces the size of your hand and a drink for around 5 Euros. That makes this a tasty budget saver.
Antico Forno Roscioli at Via dei Chiavari, 34, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
This is my go to spot because I like to stay in this neighborhood when I visit Rome. It is so central and always has a line out the door. Don’t be scared by the line, it moves quickly. They have a variety of flavors and can heat up slices if you want to take them to go warm. If you have a large order that you want to take to eat somewhere, they have boxes.
La Renella Forno Antico Trastevere at Via del Moro, 15, 00153 Roma RM, Italy
This is great pizza spot is in the Trastevere neighborhood which is known for being a foodie spot. The variety of flavors and crunchy crust make this a must stop.
Baccanale near Campo de’ Fiori, 32, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
This is around the corner from the Baccanale restaurant and is just a walk up window type quick service. They have good pizza here but I through this under here for the sandwiches. This is a great budget stop and bang for your buck. My family loves the sandwiches and pizza from here.
What is a trip to Italy without gelato. I’ve had good gelato in different neighborhoods in Rome. You don’t have to look for the closed cans for it to be good gelato. The key is to make sure it isn’t stacked up out of the tray in a huge mound!
Frigidarium at Via del Governo Vecchio, 112, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
Like I said previously, I’ve had good gelato in different parts of Rome. This place is GREAT gelato. It is hands down my favorite and I would walk from the opposite side of the city for it. I love getting the berry options and stracciatella. This is right near Mastrociccia if you don’t want tiramisu!
When it comes to Italian pastries, the cannoli always comes to mind. You can find that Sicilian delight in Rome but in my opinion, the Maritozzo reigns supreme. That is one of my daughter’s favorites too. Breakfast isn’t a huge ordeal in Italy and it is very common to have a pastry with coffee.
Roscioli Caffè Pasticceria at Piazza Benedetto Cairoli, 16, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
I’m sure you are noticing the name Roscioli a few times in this article and there are 3 different spots in this article. This in particular is their “pastry” shop. However, it does have the availability to have a sit down full breakfast if you don’t want to eat your morning pastry standing at the coffee bar. Their maritozzo is delicious as well as the others. I can’t remember their names but I have not had something from here that I didn’t like. The coffee is very good here too!
Antico Forno Roscioli Via dei Chiavari, 34, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
Now you might think I’m crazy because this was listed under pizza. Forno in Italian means bakery so you will also find breads and pastries here. I personally love their Sfogliatella. There is one that has a hint of orange to it and it is simply to die for.
Regoli Pasticceria at Via dello Statuto, 60, 00185 Roma RM, Italy
This is the place to go for the biggest and best maritozzis in Rome. Roscioli has a great good one but this one is probably the best I’ve ever had. They have a variety of other pastries so make sure you check them out.
Coffee culture is huge in Italy and is probably the best coffee I’ve had ever. There are a few things to know when you order coffee. If you simply order coffee you will get espresso. If you order a latte, you will get a glass of milk because that is the Italian world for milk. You would need to order a caffe latte or a cappuccino!
Sant’ Eustachio Il Caffè at Piazza di S. Eustachio, 82, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
This is the coffee that I bring home for family. You are going to find more bougie ways to order coffee at this shop. It might be a little touristy but it is very creamy and delicious.
Rome’s culinary scene is a true feast for the senses, offering a plethora of unforgettable dining experiences. From traditional trattorias serving up homemade pasta to Michelin-starred restaurants pushing the boundaries of Italian cuisine, the Eternal City has something for every discerning palate. So, embark on a gastronomic adventure and let the flavors of Rome enchant you. Buon appetito!
Check out my Rome, Italy Travel Guide here!
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