HOME > Chowhound > Italy >

Discussion

Rome: Studied hard, need some tutoring

  • 16
  • Share

Hello RomaHounds,
We are spending 3 nights (Thurs., Fri, Sat.) in Rome mid-May, staying behind the Pantheon on Via Santa Chiara. We are eager diners, he a fish lover (the more suction cups, tentacles, whiskers, and eyeballs the better) while I am more of a land animal eater. We will happily spend 40-50 euro each including wine for a simple, tasty meal of a shared appetizer, a pasta each, and maybe a shared secondi. We are completely uninterested in being punished for the sin of being tourists (seated in the basement or attic, charged extra, etc.) no matter how good the food might be. Unless there is new information, that leaves out Grano and Antico Arco.

We don't mind eating at the same place twice, and understand this might be an advantage. We don't need a variety of Italian -- fresh, simple, seasonal is perfect.

Good value wine is important to us. I'm a recently-graduated sommelier, so I know it doesn't have to be expensive to be good. Unfortunately, my teacher was dismissive of Italian wines; part of my mission on this trip is to fill in the gaps in my education. But it doesn't have to all happen in Rome as we are headed to Tuscany and Cinque Terre later.

We hope to take in one major sight in the morning, eat a good lunch, take a nap, and head out for a decently late dinner -- we LOVE eating late Euro style.

Based on what I've been able to discern from the staggering number of posts on the topic of eating in Rome, I've got a pretty small list. Please correct me if I have the neighborhoods wrong or it's not walking distance -- and add something if you are truly called to do so. All comments are appreciated.

On our first night we thought we would wander around the immediate Pantheon area and have dinner in the neighborhood or close enough to walk. I've narrowed it down to:
Armando al Pantheon,
Roscioli
Osteria Enoteca al Bric
Ditirambo

Friday lunch near the Colosseum:
Hostaria de Nerone
Enoteca Cavour 313

Friday Dinner near Spanish Steps:
Palatium
La Campana

Saturday lunch near Vatican:
Trattoria Lilli
Pizzarium
a picnic from the Mercato Trionfale

Saturday Dinner:
A repeat maybe or a place we didn't hit on Thursday or Friday

Thank you all,
Amy

-----
Antico Arco
Piazzale Aurelio, 7, Roma 00151, IT

La Campana
Vicolo della Campana, 18, Roma, IT 00186, IT

Palatium
Via Frattina 94, Roma , IT

Enoteca Cavour 313
Via Cavour 313, Roma 00184, IT

Ditirambo
Piazza della Cancelleria, 73, Rome, Lazio 00186, IT

Roscioli
Via dei Giubbonari 21/23, Rome, Lazio 00186, IT

Pizzarium
Via della Meloria, 43, Rome, Lazio 00136, IT

Grano
Piazza Rondanini, 53, Rome, Lazio 00186, IT

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
Delete
Posting Guidelines | FAQs | Feedback
Cancel
  1. And where is your tentacle-loving companion going to eat?

    4 Replies
    1. re: mbfant

      Got scared of fish in Rome due to the truly unmanageable prices mentioned in other posts. Figured since we are headed to Riomaggiore several days later, he could get his fish on then. But if there are places within our budget where we both can be happy, please share.

      1. re: AmyMad

        tentacles and fish are different propositions, tho. Whole fish standards in italy are very high, fish are getting rarer and so the price of the best is becoming stratospheric. Seafood dishes might be less prohibitively priced.

        Im also interested in an answer to a related question. On early visits to Rome we used to be offered grilled trout (delicious!) frequently. at a very reasonable price Havent seen it for a while, is this still a Rome thing and if so who offers it? Has it gone the way of the wild field green salads?

        1. re: jen kalb

          My bad -- I was thinking of anything that gets pulled out of water as one category. I think we are more talking about seafood. On a trip to Venice several years ago he was enraptured by such dishes as seppia and squid in its own ink . Are we still in the financial stratosphere on those sorts of items? Is there a place where I could get pasta carbonara, he could eat creatures, and we would be on budget?

          1. re: AmyMad

            Another good reason to reconsider Antico Arco! You can eat carbonara (with black truffle) or amatriciana while he can have lobster (astice) salad, little squid or fish eggs (bottarga) preparations.
            You can check their web site for a complete menu (with prices) in English too.

            Quote also vinoroma suggestion about La Gensola.

            -----
            Antico Arco
            Piazzale Aurelio, 7, Roma 00151, IT

            La Gensola
            Piazza della Gensola, 15, Rome, Lazio 00153, IT

    2. Hello AmyMad,
      you have selected a good list, at least for the places I know.
      It is missing a place specialized in fish as already highlighted by mbfant, but it's not easy to find a good one in the historical center within your budget.
      Another couple of quick comments, than I'll try to post something more later:
      - in my opinion Palatium and La Campana are better for lunch.
      - I'd not leave out Antico Arco for a single bad experience, that is regrettable but it is just one compared with many positive comments coming from local and tourists. I love food and service in this place and If you wish to spend a bit more than 50 euros per person for a "special" dinner it worth to go there or to Settembrini. Both have a very good wine selection too.

      -----
      Antico Arco
      Piazzale Aurelio, 7, Roma 00151, IT

      La Campana
      Vicolo della Campana, 18, Roma, IT 00186, IT

      Palatium
      Via Frattina 94, Roma , IT

      Settembrini
      Via Luigi Settembrini, 25, Rome, Lazio , IT

      8 Replies
      1. re: tavoleromane

        I wouldn't omit Antico Arco either. I am an uber-tourist and have eaten there three times and have never been punished for the sin my touristic existence. I have been seated upstairs and also downstairs, never by any particular request on my part. Have had solicitous, even charming service in both dining rooms. Most importantly, the food is great!

        By the way, unless I'm crazy I think La Campana is rather closer to where you are staying than the Spanish Steps.

        -----
        Antico Arco
        Piazzale Aurelio, 7, Roma 00151, IT

        La Campana
        Vicolo della Campana, 18, Roma, IT 00186, IT

        1. re: Leely2

          Leely2, you are not crazy, but the difference btw La Campana and Palatium from OP's hotel is 300 meters / 328 yards, negligible....

          -----
          La Campana
          Vicolo della Campana, 18, Roma, IT 00186, IT

          Palatium
          Via Frattina 94, Roma , IT

          1. re: vinoroma

            Thank you to everyone! I am going to recalculate according to your advice and suggestions. Between my plan and the Eat Rome app, I think we will be in good shape. On to Florence...new post.
            Best regards,
            Amy

        2. re: tavoleromane

          @tavoleromane: why would Palatium and La Campana be better for lunch? Others advise for dinner, but I am really curious about the difference between lunch and dinner. Just when I thought I was getting it all figured out...

          -----
          La Campana
          Vicolo della Campana, 18, Roma, IT 00186, IT

          Palatium
          Via Frattina 94, Roma , IT

          1. re: AmyMad

            Of course it is a subjective point of view, Palatium is in the hearth of downtown shopping area and it is a nice break at lunch time but has not the warm environment I prefer at dinner for these kind of restaurants. La Campana is the typical traditional place where you go on Sunday for a family lunch. I'm missing it since few years but reading other reviews it seems like time is stopped for it...and this is a very good thing for Rome!
            I did't want to mean you can not choose these restaurants for dinner if this is better fitting to your visit schedule but I think at lunch you could have a better experience there.

            1. re: tavoleromane

              @tavoleroman: Thank you for the explanation. For dinner we do prefer something warm and relaxing and quiet. So, for dinner you would recommend Antico Arco, or La Gensola? I think Settembrini is too fishy for me? I really appreciate your insight. Thank you.
              Amy

              -----
              Antico Arco
              Piazzale Aurelio, 7, Roma 00151, IT

              La Gensola
              Piazza della Gensola, 15, Rome, Lazio 00153, IT

              Settembrini
              Via Luigi Settembrini, 25, Rome, Lazio , IT

              1. re: AmyMad

                Settembrini is not fishier than La gensola, actually less, and about the same as Antico Arco. At each of these you can have a non-fish meal while your partner has a fishy one. Wine list-wise it is Settembrini, Antico Arco, Gensola... But quiet? none will be.

                -----
                Antico Arco
                Piazzale Aurelio, 7, Roma 00151, IT

                Settembrini
                Via Luigi Settembrini, 25, Rome, Lazio , IT

                1. re: AmyMad

                  Sorry for the late answer AmyMad. As already mentioned by vinoroma between the three the fishier is La Gensola and it is mainly Sicilian food too.
                  Both Antico Arco and Settembrini for me are among the warmer and quiter restaurants in Rome in their range of price. They are famous and often full but the number of tables is the right one and service (usually) is very nice.
                  Difficult to choose, my recommendation for a first visit in Rome probably would be Antico Arco but consider that if the weather is warm they don't have outside tables while Settembrini has.
                  In both cases anyhow I'm sure you'll enjoy a great and special dinner!

          2. Ciao AmyMad,
            I will give a wine-centric feedback to your list. I am a sommelier.
            As others, I am missing the fish place in your list. Within your budget, and with a good wine list, would be La Gensola in Trastevere. You can have non-fish there while your partner goes wild. :) And you will stay within your budget. Should be open everyday lunch & dinner in May.
            Thursday dinner: Roscioli without discussion for me.
            Friday Lunch: enoteca cavour, if you have to stay in that are.
            Friday Dinner: both good, but Palatium better for wines.
            Saturday Lunch: You know Lilli and Pizzarium are at different ends of the area roughly called Vatican? Both not good for wine, but both yummy, though I'd prefer pizzarium.
            Saturday Dinner: Settembrini or Antico Arco. I agree with Tavoleromane in his comment about the one-off experience at antico arco. Both deliver great food and have lovely wine lists, settembrini maybe a bit more unusual selection.
            By the way, terrible to hear about your teacher being dismissive about Italian wines, I am a wine educator and encounter this stance very often, esp. regarding the whites of Italy. Please do a lot of tasting while you are in Italy to make up your own mind!

            -----
            Antico Arco
            Piazzale Aurelio, 7, Roma 00151, IT

            Palatium
            Via Frattina 94, Roma , IT

            Roscioli
            Via dei Giubbonari 21/23, Rome, Lazio 00186, IT

            Pizzarium
            Via della Meloria, 43, Rome, Lazio 00136, IT

            La Gensola
            Piazza della Gensola, 15, Rome, Lazio 00153, IT

            Settembrini
            Via Luigi Settembrini, 25, Rome, Lazio , IT

            1. Hi Amy,
              Jumping in a bit late.
              Of your choices near the pantheon I would choose Roscioli. I also love Renato e Luisa.
              Near the Colosseum for lunch definitely go to L'Asino d'Oro. Their fixed menu is 12 euros and since it is a Friday they just might have fish that day.
              Friday dinner near Spanish Steps: Definitely La Campana over Palaztium. But not so far away is Settembrini, across the river and one of the best restaurants in town. Expensive, but well worth it.
              Saturday Dinner: How about Vino e Camino?
              Hope this helps,
              Elizabeth
              _______
              www.elizabethminchilli.com

              -----
              La Campana
              Vicolo della Campana, 18, Roma, IT 00186, IT

              Roscioli
              Via dei Giubbonari 21/23, Rome, Lazio 00186, IT

              Renato e Luisa
              Via dei Barbieri, 25, Rome, Lazio , IT

              L'Asino d'Oro
              Via del Boschetto 73, Rome, Lazio 00184, IT

              Settembrini
              Via Luigi Settembrini, 25, Rome, Lazio , IT

              Vino e Camino
              piazza dell’Oro 6, Rome, Lazio , IT