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Nov 28, 2010 12:29 AM

Celebrating BIG birthday in Rome....

...and need to distract myself with great food and wine. Have a reservation at La Pergola for the big birthday dinner, but also want to find terrific little mom & pop places. And overall recommendations for the best places in all price ranges.
I'm staying right at the Spanish Steps....but will travel for great food!
I'll be there the first two weeks of December.
Gracie in advance.....

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  1. You might want to do a'll find lots and lots of posts about Rome. For example, here is my report from a few weeks ago:

    3 Replies
    1. re: jla1960

      Thanks jla. I have read a number of the posts...just trying to add to the list and get more opinions to help narrow things down!

      1. re: perk

        I think you'll find that you'll get more replies if you ask about some specific restaurants, as opposed to "where should I eat in Rome?". Its a big city with thousands of restaurants....if you find some places in other posts that you are interested in, people can then weigh in on those specific places, or perhaps offer alternative suggestions.

        1. re: jla1960

          Good point...I really did leave it too wide open. I'll blame old age!

    2. Last year we stayed near the Spanish Steps and had a wonderful pizza dinner at Il Pollarolo, which was within walking distance of our hotel. Although I don't think it was within walking distance, one of our best meals was at Roscioli on Via dei Guibbonari - we liked it so much we had lunch AND dinner there!

      1 Reply
      1. re: ekc

        Survived the birthday and had a wonderful time. The celebratory dinner at La Pergola was amazing. It really is a wonderful experience. Did the tasting menu (9 courses) and everything was terrific--especially the black cod. Chef came to the table and there was a lovely birthday cake. (not that we needed more food, but hey--one doesn't turn 60 every day.) They handed me a printed menu when we left, which also had the wines we'd ordered. Nice touch.
        Found a couple of other places that I liked a lot. Osteria Der Belli in Trastevere was excellent.
        Went there twice for the grilled sole. Also good pasta and antipasti.
        And I fell in love with Nino. I'd read the comments about it being old school and the wait staff being somewhat rude if you're not a regular or celebrity....but I found it to be welcoming. Went for lunch twice. The first time with a friend; we both agreed it reminded us of Mussco & Frank here in Los Angeles. (but Nino has better food) On my last day in Rome, I went by myself. It was the day of the Berlosconi vote, so the place was "abuzz" with talk about the topic of the day. My Italian isn't good enough for me to understand much of what they said...but it was fun to be in the middle of it. I had the carciofi romano twice....and a couple of different pastas. The orchiette with broccoli was especially good....pasta all'amatriciana also solid.
        I also stumbled on a good place close to my apartment.....on Via Vittoria...just minutes from the Spanish steps. It's called Ristorante Gabriello. It's in the basement of the building. Don't be put off by all of the Marilyn Monroe art (the resident artist is evidently a huge fan); it's a charming place with very good food.
        Can't wait to go back. I miss it already!

      2. You can't go wrong with Katie Parla's suggestions: