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Jan 5, 2009 10:24 AM

Favorite Trastevere Restaurants

We travel to Rome every summer for a month; this will be our first time renting an apartment in Trastevere. I'd like recommendations on favorite restaurants and/or places to avoid. We've eaten already at Marmi, Da Augusto, and Da Ivo. We have two children, but they do well nearly anywhere we go. Are there any quaint mom-and-pop restaurants left in Trastevere, or have most of them become over-touristed? (We love Testaccio and eat there often-so know how to get away from the crowds). What about specialty food stores? Thanks for any advice on eating in Trastevere!

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  1. My favorite wicked indulgence is pizza al taglio at Frontoni on viale Trastevere. Our favorite restaurant is Paris, on Piazza San Callisto. On the Gianicolo (the hill above Trastevere), we like Antico Arco.
    There are a lot of places to avoid in Trastevere, but I think you can easily recognize them.

    9 Replies
    1. re: mbfant

      We always like going to Spirito di Vino. Excellent food, Mom does all of the cooking, Pop works the dining room and Son is the sommelier and kind of a character. Nice laid back atmosphere and Romeo (Pop) will give you a tour of their ancinet wine cellar and tell you about it's history, if you ask.

      1. re: MagnumWino

        I find the son to be pretty condescending. The meal was good and pops and the cellar were great (ancient synagogue), but the son's attitude spoiled the evening fro me.

        1. re: desylicious

          desylicious, I understand what you're saying. He knows his stuff, but sometimes he trys to be a bit of a character which could put some people off. I find he's ok in small doses.

      2. re: mbfant

        Nice to see you like the restaurant that I am working at (Antico Arco)! :)
        Now you can add it to your list on the webpage aswell under "Open on sundays"...since about one and a half months we┬┤re open 7/7.

        / john

        1. re: Caputmundicibus

          That is wonderful news. Lunch and dinner or just dinner? Sunday lunch and dinner?

          1. re: mbfant

            Hi mbfant,

            Curious what you think about Rivadestra? I have two nights in Trastevere coming up myself and have heard good things about it and considering it for one of my dinners. I think Antico Arco will be the other.

            1. re: slopetoridge

              I haven't been and don't know anyone who has. From its web site, it looks really precious/self-conscious, with one of those menus that's all over the map. And the tables look really close together. I'll have to reserve judgment till I go there.

            2. re: mbfant

              Mon-Sat just dinner. Sunday Lunch AND dinner.

              1. re: Caputmundicibus

                This is excellent news! I will be in Rome in a few weeks, and was originally going to miss Antico Arco since Sunday was the only night we could go there. This is excellent!

        2. We really enjoyed an evening at Le Mani in Pasta, via dei Genovesi, 37. It's on the testaccio side of Trastevere. The food was fresh, simply and skillfully prepared. Somehow everyone seemed to be in a really good mood, both dinners and staff. We (4 of us) tried a great variety of dishes, all worth recommendation. Had good luck with the wine list, too.

          1 Reply
          1. re: andhollis

            Le Mani in Pasta is a favorite, but has gone down hill the last few years. Try the veal and the pasta with the fava beans.

          2. The original comment has been removed
            1. Based on Maureen's suggestion here, we enjoyed a very nice lunch at La Gensola in May. Seafood was fresh, pastas excellent and service warm and accomodating. The room is crowded with Romans chit chatting so it can be noisy. Not the best restaurant of our time in Rome this past spring but we would return when in Trastevere.

              2 Replies
              1. re: wristband

                Did you post on your experience with other restaurants you thought were much better? Would like to have your input

                1. re: CJT

                  Thoughts from May 09 are here:
                  Search IndyMac's suggestions as she and Maureen Fant are spot on.

                  Not Trastevere but...excellent meals at Colline Emiliane, Piperno and Capranica (three Michelin forks and a new, very creative chef). If children in tow, forget Capranica. I really do mean all three were terrific. La Piazzetta has a generous lunch buffett with considerable veggies (rare in Rome) - nice spot if you are touring in that vicinity and want to avoid the usual heavy menu choices. Dal Bolognese was surprisingly good for Sunday lunch.

                  Specialty food stores, of course, Volpetti and Rosciolis. Armando is pleasant but I just can't buy into the food raves. Several meals were just okay. Location and staff make it worthwhile (and they offer traditional Roman dishes on the menu).

                  BTW, San Crispino was a major disappointment. Several visits produced the worst gelato we had in Rome. A number of Romans echoed that sad verdict. Far better gelato options elsewhere. Skip it.