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Monti in May

We're about to rent an apartment in Rome in the Monte (Monti) quarter. Other than Trattoria Monte (which we love), where else shall we eat? We need a couple of other trattoria-like places plus a place for breakfast, good coffee. We can figure out the fancy gourmet places, but we need local neighborhood knowledge.

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  1. Panella - l'Arte del Pane is an excellent bakery where you will find not only bread, cakes, and cookies, but hot foods at lunch and dinner times and expensive but delicious chocolates all the time. They have a cafe bar and small grocery department. It's on the corner of via Merulana and Largo Leopardi, just a few blocks from Tratoria Monti.
    Also, there is a grocery store/supermarket in the basement of the department store facing the entrance to Santa Maria Maggiore. they have a good deli department, freshly made breads (not the quality of Panella, but not bad either), fresh fruits and vegetables, seafood, cheeses, wines, etc. at good prices

    11 Replies
    1. re: CJT

      Much thanks -- it goes right on our list.

      1. re: elizabeth2929

        I think what is convenient to you will depend on where you are in the sprawling Monti neighborhood. There are some nice neighborhood shops on IVia Serpenti and Via Boschetto if you are in that part - and a pretty good Indian Restaurant on the former.as well as a little piazza with cafes down at the bottom of the hill near the church. We shopped at the supermarket CJT mentioned - it is large but middle market - you might well do better elsewhere.
        If you havent seen it already here is a nice little neighborhood summary prepared by one of the RE companies http://www.romanhomes.com/your_roman_...

        1. re: jen kalb

          The best supermarket is probably Elite on via Cavour just below where it forks into via Lanza.

          As you say, the area is large. There is no place fantastic, but there are a number of little places cultivable as one's local.

          1. re: mbfant

            We are close to via Serpenti. (corner of via Fagutale and Via Eudossiana). We chose apartment for the terrace view of coliseum and for a change of our usual place. (The romanhomes piece gives a flavor and one restaurant suggestion.) I could probably spread out my eating over the week with one course a day at Trattoria Monti (about 10 minutes walk from where we are). I've aged out of all the big meals day after day, no matter how much I walk.

            I still need one or two particular names of the little not-so-fantastic places to eat near our apartment. I'm looking for warm, welcoming, pretty consistent family-owned places where the cooking is reasonably delicious, if not the best available in all of Rome.

            I know that Indian in Rome is an odd choice (especially coming from NYC) and reviews are mixed for the one you a probably referring to --the name escapes me now. But if you say that it fits my description above, we'll give it a try. Thanks.

            1. re: elizabeth2929

              Things that fit your needs would be: La Carbonara on via Panisperna, Urbana47 (winebar with small meals), Al vino al vino (ditto), mia (organic grocery/shop/lunch/cafe).

              1. re: elizabeth2929

                for that location I think you could patronize Nerone on Via Terme di Tito as your local - the places on Via Cavour are also not far off.
                this thread has some suggestions.
                http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/564836

                As you must know the georgraphy in that area is rather complicated with ups and downs and major streets and monuments that may make one or another route more desirable

                1. re: jen kalb

                  I'm probably in denial about the ups and downs but I do remember from 2007 some of the other threads that mentioned how it was necessary to walk around the coliseum and up a hill to get to some desirable places. For casual eating, I like to carry the chowhound list and depend on serendipity for the rest. Your choices are entered, including those on the 2008 thread above. I can't wait.

                  1. re: elizabeth2929

                    Looking forward to your report back. I suspect that mbfant who lives somewhere nearby can tell you a bit more now that you have triangulated your actual location.

                    1. re: elizabeth2929

                      Just went to the Roman Homes website to see where you will be staying and noted there a link to restaurants in the area. One listed is Goffredo at Via Panisperna 231 and this puzzles me. We dined in 2003 and 2006 at a seafood restaurant with that address but it was known as Ristorante da Robertino. The Roman Homes page shows the owner, Roberto, in his restaurant, but this is Robertino, owner of the place we ate in. In 2003, he served us multiple plates of cold and warm seafood appetizers – the grilled octopus was the most tender and delicious we ever had – then recommended his house Frascati to accompany these and our main courses. All was excellent. In 2006, we went back and found his daughter in charge; she told us he had opened a second restaurant and was spending a lot of time there. Food was again very good. Since it is in easy walking distance of where you will stay, I suggest you check it out (if you do, tell me whether the name is still Robertino or has changed to Goffredo).
                      Not far from there or your apartment is a Sardinian restaurant we also ate at in 2006. We did not try enough of the Sardinian specialties to judge, but food was good. Another place just around the corner for you to try a different Italian cuisine at Viccolo dei Serpenti, 8 : Perdingianu & Croccoriga

                      1. re: CJT

                        I think I've got a fix on "local" after I read some older threads. Nerone -- just around the corner sounds right (assuming it is not some huge hill). Also, though no one mentioned it here, MFant mentions La Piazzetta on an earlier post. And someone kind soul mentioned that using the Colleseum tube stop escalator may get around some of the hills. (Ditto, the Spanish Steps stop, for anyone who is interested and doesn't want to thread their way through the bodies on the stairs.) So looks like I'm set. (Plus RNeeno sent me his excel sheet list.)

                        1. re: elizabeth2929

                          As for the sea food restaurant -- alas no report from me. DH eats NO fish/seafood, etc. (He can attest that the steak in NYC's Le Bernadin is excellent.)

        2. I would suggest rethinking Trattoria Monti which has gone downhill fast (how, i do not know) in the past year-18 months. I have been super disappointed by my last 3 meals there. That is a sufficient number of strikes for me.

          i agree w vino roma on al vino al vino and urbana 47.

          dont miss panificio monti, a wonderful bakery, also on via urbana. Caffe Ivanhoe (via Urbana again) is also great for coffee.

          Panella is a huge waste of € in my opinion. if you want great bread, pizza al taglio, and other baked goods, go to rocsioli on via buonarotti. they also have a tavola calda. stop by regoli on via dello statuto for dessert.

          La Piazzetta is the bomb but i have to say Nerone is not my favorite place (sad, as I can throw a rock at it from my house and really want to sometimes). It is one of those places that never knocked my socks off. oh well....

          4 Replies
          1. re: katieparla

            We had pretty delicious food at Trattoria Monti (the best we had in Rome on the trip) in November - my beef was with the seeming two tier service.

            i wouldnt hesitate to recommend it but memorize the posted menu before you go in - chances are they arent going to tell you the specials but give you a big printed english menu instead. and dont order wine by the glass you will get fleeced.

            Nerone is still a decent local trattoria, but not the special place it was 10+ years ago.

            We had the best pannetone ever at Panella in 2005 as well as a very good gubana and a lot of other items but their stuff is incredibly pricy. We had some prepared food too and it was too glopped up with besciamella. Dont think its worth the walk over from the OP's apartment.

            1. re: jen kalb

              I mentioned Panella before the OP told us where her apartment was, so I agree it's not worth the walk from where she will be. She's a lot closer to Via Nazionale than to Via Merulana

              1. re: CJT

                than panificio monti is a better bakery option anyway and specialize in roman things done well rather that lots of regional baked goods that are just so-so (panella)

                1. re: katieparla

                  Panella's decorated windows are worth a look, should you find yourself walking nearby.