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Rustic food in Rome, Sorrento and Bari - Ciao!

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Ciao, Chowhounds!
I"ve read the boards on Rome restaurants but am hoping some of you will give me very up to date advice for a specific request: Thanks in advance!

We are taking our two boys (8 & 13) to Rome next week, followed by a week in Sorrento and then to Bari, in Puglia region. We are frequent travelers, but haven't visited Italy for some time. We are looking for restaurant recommendations for DELICIOUS, rustic food, preferably in a small setting, with no restrictions on price. The boys have pretty sophisticated palates and are able to dine late.

In Rome, a suggestion for lunch near the Coliseum and also one near Via Veneto would be great. Anyone familiar with Il Matriciana near Vatican? For dinners, near Spanish Steps/ Via Veneto, but cuisine must be regional Italian, nothing nouveau.

Finally, any specific restaurant suggestions for dining outside on any of the beautiful Roman piazzas?

A suggestion or two for Sorrento would be very much appreciated as well!!
Grazzi mille!!

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  1. Unbelievable. Your note matches exactly (two boys, same age, rustic, no price restrictions, etc.) what I've been slaving to accomplish over the last two months ahead of our trip (I've even hired locals for the help). Not sure if you ever found anything or are still there, but here are 4 restaurants I found (for Rome) through my process:

    Piccolo Abruzzo
    Bistrot 23
    Antonio al Pantheon
    Old Bear

    We leave in two weeks oursleves. Any recommendations in return would be greatly appreciated.

    Best,

    Lou

    2 Replies
    1. re: lougray

      It is Armando al Pantheon

      1. re: barberinibee

        Nope, it's Antonio AND Da Armando (two different but equally tasty restaurants)

    2. Slowfood places are good if you like nonfancy places with the real regional food
      Here is a link to some slowfood places in Bari.http://search.chow.com/search?query=B...
      Put Sorrento in the search box above and it should give you a similar list for the Sorrento area.
      Near the Colosseum, you might want to head down to Testaccio where there are a lot of restaurants cooking the roman regional cuisine. You can catch a tram and give your boys a kick if you dont want to walk. search here and you will see some recommendations in this neighborhood. My kids liked volpetti piu - the cateteria style set up next to the famous volpetti store.

      1. Katie has a great list of her favorite Rome restaurants at www.parlafood.com.