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Favorite Trastevere Restaurants

aventine Jan 5, 2009 10:24 AM

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. mbfant RE: aventine Jan 6, 2009 01:03 AM

    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
      MagnumWino RE: mbfant Jan 6, 2009 03:22 AM

      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
        desylicious RE: MagnumWino Nov 11, 2009 05:25 PM

        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
          MagnumWino RE: desylicious Nov 17, 2009 06:44 AM

          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
        Caputmundicibus RE: mbfant Jan 6, 2009 05:08 PM

        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
          mbfant RE: Caputmundicibus Jan 6, 2009 09:42 PM

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

          1. re: mbfant
            slopetoridge RE: mbfant Jan 7, 2009 07:23 PM

            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
              mbfant RE: slopetoridge Jan 7, 2009 09:00 PM

              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
              Caputmundicibus RE: mbfant Apr 23, 2009 02:47 AM

              Mon-Sat just dinner. Sunday Lunch AND dinner.

              1. re: Caputmundicibus
                ms. chow RE: Caputmundicibus Apr 23, 2009 06:13 AM

                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. a
          andhollis RE: aventine Apr 23, 2009 04:28 PM

          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
            desylicious RE: andhollis Nov 11, 2009 05:27 PM

            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. w
            wristband RE: aventine Nov 20, 2009 06:48 AM

            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
              CJT RE: wristband Nov 20, 2009 03:30 PM

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

              1. re: CJT
                wristband RE: CJT Nov 22, 2009 07:23 AM

                Thoughts from May 09 are here: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/619246
                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.

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