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The Best in Rome


Romeo Chef and Baker
Newly opened by the Roscioli brothers, chefs Alessandro and PierLuigi, whose restaurant and salumeria in via dei Giubbonari has become one the city's foodie destinations, and the team of chefs Cristina Bowerman and Fabio Spada from Glass in Trastevere, which is near the top of many best in Rome lists. The decor is super modern verging on outer space, all black white  and red, with a ceiling crawling with white metal tubing and glass space ship mobiles. As you enter, you'll notice the Roscioli signature bank of salmumi to take away, with the addition of a case full of tempting baked goods. The tables are simple, adorned with black rubbery place mats in place of cloth. The menu is adventurous, but a tad less weird than the fare at glass, and there is the Roscioli-inspired list of fresh mozzarella dishes. Everything we've tried has been delicious and innovative — Ravioli with ricotta, parmigiano, pepper, lemon and bottarga was a stand out. The main dishes are varied from a couple of hamburgers with a twist to a filet of beef with mushrooms and bok choy, to  confit of rombo (Mediterranean sea bass) with a puree of whipped potatoes dressed with lemon and radicchio. The wine list is more than adequate, a bit on the expensive sides, but you can find a bottle for just under €20 if you look hard. Open every day from 9 am to midnight .€€
Via Silla 26/a (Prati) tel 06 32 110 120

Master pizza chef Gabriele Bonci's place is a must stop on any tour of Rome. Open from breakfast until late at night, you can take your slices to go, or sit on a bench just outside to gobble them down. Bonci loves inventing interesting toppings for his signature sour dough crust.€
Via della Meloria 43 (Prati near the Cipro metro stop)

Ristorante delle Vittorie
An alternative to the over-priced, cookie-cutter restaurants that fill the blocks surrounding the Vatican. Recently given a facelift under the direction Gaetano Castelli, who designs sets for Italian television shows, including the Sanremo Festival, the Ristorante delle Vittorie has become a hangout for actors, directors and executives. The staff prides itself not only on the quality of its menu but also on the presentation of the dishes.  Freshness is of paramount importance to them and since fish is at its freshest in Rome on Tuesdays and Fridays, don’t even look for it on at another time.  Whenever artichokes are in season, they serve the best (bar none) carciofisalad in town.  Paper thin slices of grana and parmigiano cheeses garnish the equally finely cut, melt-in-your-mouth artichokes.  The menu is filled with classic Roman dishes such as, rigatoni alla gricia, spaghetti alla carbonara (with Italian bacon, eggs and cheese), and bucatini all’amatriciana (a spicy tomato sauce with guanciale, the tenderest part of the pig).  No matter what you select, you won’t be disappointed.Be sure to mention In Rome Now.
Via Monte Santo, 58 – 64, tel  06 3735 2776 www.dellevittorie.com

Al Ceppo
The elegant yet cozy atmosphere of this popular Rome restaurant in the upscale Parioli district is created by traditional furnishings, abundant flower arrangements and an open, wood-stoked fireplace where fish, meats and vegetables are roasted. Chef Mirko Moglioni’s excellent cuisine is inspired by the traditional dishes of the Marche region. Start with the schiacciatina di bianchetti all’arancia ed erba cipollina (ground fish grilled and served with an orange-chive sauce), then move on to one of the home-made pasta dishes such as the ravioli filled with artichokes and a delicate seafood blend, followed by grilled chops or herb-encrusted fish. Service is gracious and the owners, sisters Marisa and Cristina Milosa move through the rooms greeting their guests. (Cristina’s daughter is the talented sommelier.) €€
Via Panama 2 tel. 06.841 9696 Closed Mondays.

Molto Libreria Con Cucina

A stylish restaurant within the Ily coffee store, where chef Paolo Cristignano serves up traditinal cuisine with a creative touch. At lunch there is a big salad bar as well as an a la carte menu. Roasted meats, pastas, nice dessert selection. Terrace dining in warm weather.
Brunch on Sundays from 12:30 - 3:30 pm with a fixed price of €40, kids €30.Take-out dishes.
Via Viale dei Parioli 122 tel 06 808 2900


Home of chef Roy Salomon Caceres, who worked at the l Relais & Chateaux “il Pellicano” in Porto Ercole and at Pipero in Albano Laziale before coming to Rome. He offers creative tasting menus with dishes like red prawns and avocado in wild oyster cream or crispy lamb with almonds, eggplant and gin-juniper ice cream. Open late for those attending performances at the nearby Teatro Olimpico or Parco della Musica, with supper service from 10:30 pm at a prix fixe €48.
Via Giovanni Antonelli, 30/32 (Parioli) tel 06 8076839
Recommended by Roman Katie Parla. Read about Katie on our Meet the Romans pages.

Da Benito e Gilberto al Falco
Theirs is the only lit doorway on this quiet residential street in Borgo Pio, moments away from the Vatican. You’ll be surprised when you enter the one-room Rome restaurant to find that the world has eaten here in the more than 25 years it’s been open. Photos of Pope Giovanni Paolo II, Marcello Mastroianni, Federico Fellini and may other celebrities cover the walls. It’s strictly a restaurant for seafood lovers, beginning with the vast selection of antipasti; bruschetta with pomodori e vongole, raw fish carpaccio, three or four choices of oysters, octopus, shrimps. Some entrèes pay homage to tradition. You know when you see a favorite pasta dish on the menu, such as fagioli con frutta di mare (beans with various seafoods), that it comes directly from a grandmother’s kitchen. The fish is always perfectly fresh, the calmari and octupus tender and flavorful. We recommend lemon sorbet after a fish meal. Or splurge on the panna cotta al ciccolata. €€€
Open dinner only and lunch by special request.
Via del Falco, 19 tel. 06 686 7769 Dinner only. Closed Sunday and Monday.

Fabio C'è
Walk down a flight of glass steps into this clean and modern restaurant, just opened in December. You'll with the surroundings, modern and uncluttered, tables spaced at a discrete distance from one another. The focal point is a dramatic stone wall, behind glass doors, and lit from below with candles plainted in a border of sand. Everything is beautifully designed, including the cutlery, in elongated, elegant shape reminiscent of Giacometti. Try the cacio e pepe with the surprise of fresh mint; all of the fish dishes are good. We loved the salmon in a poppy and sesame seed crust. Meat lovers will want to try the filet of beef braised in Calvados. And for dessert, a chocolate souffle, fresh from the oven with a center of runny hot fudge. Good wine list, with many excellent wines offered by the glass. €€€
Via Oslavia, 54 (Prati) tel 06 375 00193

L'Officina dei Sapori
The tables at this seafood restaurant are always full, especially after a performance at the nearby Parco della Musica. The menu offers an unusual and imaginative fusion of foods; tarte tatin of artichokes with English cream al pecorino, vegetable tempura prepared with rice flour and fizzy water, ravioli stuffed with cod fish and potatoes with clams and carot juice. The sweet and sour young pork is a meat lovers delight. Can’t complain about the desserts: fondente with red pepper, pistacchio cream topped with crunchy toppings. €€
Via Flamina, 297 (Flaminio) tel 06 976 00350 Closed Sunday Open till 1:00 a.m.

Del Frate Osteria
On quiet residential street, away from throngs of traffic, but central enough to be the perfect stop after the theater or a performance at the Parco della Musica, this comfortable restaurant offers good service and hospitality. The specialites include sashimi, sushi, pasta with seafood, or fresh fish, broiled or baked and lightly seasoned. Cheese selection. Home-made desserts. Best of all, they are open late with a flexible closing hour, and after-performance service available until midnight. It fills up quickly, so make reservations in advance. €€
Via Calderini, 64 (Flaminio) tel 06 324 4262
Closed Monday

Jeff Blynn
When you can’t look at another plate of pasta and could kill for a cheeseburger, chiliburger or steak, this is your place. We can’t name another restaurant in Rome with such a wide-ranging menu: from barbeque to sushi to Italian favorites such as salt-crusted spigola (white fish). Desserts remain true to the red, white and blue: warm apple pie with ice cream, chocolate cake and cheesecake. Although much of the menu is down-home, the decor is elegant and sophisticated, and the location is appropriately near the American ambassador’s residence and Villa Gloria. €€€
Viale Parioli, 103c tel. 06.807 0444 Closed Monday.

If you’re looking for a young crowd, you’ll feel at home in this Rome restaurant where modern decor combines with friendly service. Named after surfing legend, Duke Kahanamoku, it’s a corner of California in the midst of Italy. Try the grilled tuna steak with sesame seed crust and and chose a bottle from the best selection of California wines in Europe. Later in the evening the bar gets hopping. €€
Viale Parioli, 200 tel. 06.806 62455
Open 12:30 p.m. to 1:00 a.m.Closed Sunday

There’s lots of space, light and movement in this Neapolitan pizzeria with two large dining rooms on two floors, and an accomodating terrace that has just enough greenery to feel comfortably out of doors. Just off the main dining room, perfectly cut logs are stacked into an open wall space ready for the classic wood burning-oven. In addition to the pizza selection, there are antipasti of bruschette, focaccie and mozzarella as well as an ample selection of entrees including pastas and carne alla brace (skewered meat). €€
Via Flaminia, 523 (corner of Corso Francia) tel. 06.454 33423 Open daily til midnight A second restaurant has just opened in Largo Argentina.

Ristorante Cafe Cassamortaro
Affectionately dubbed cassamortaro for the coffin builder neighbors who once resided next door, this is one of the best pizzerie in the area. Favorite appetizers include tempura vegetables and shoe string potatoes. Classic pasta dishes are also on the menu. Reservations necessary especially if you prefer outdoor seating on the patio/terrace. The charming interior is uncomfortably warm in summer, but perfect during cooler months. €€
Via Flaminia Vecchia, 515 tel. 06.333 2528 Open daily til midnight


The lounge and restaurant at the Parco della Musica complex is a “happening within a happening.” Open from morning coffee through lunch, tea, cocktails, dinner, and post-concert entertainment. Before and after an auditorium event the nocturnal crowd makes itself comfortable in the dining area with its wicker seating and tables arranged under an arcaded corridor. Try the pre-show supper buffet or stop in for an afternoon apertivo. €€
Viale Piazza De Coubertin, 30 tel. 06 806 91630 Open daily until 3:00 a.m.

T-Bone Station

Frequented by a mostly young crowd, and those combining business appointments with dining, this American-style steakhouse is a bit gimmicky, with suspended video monitors, and railroad tracks encased in crystal. Steak in all its varieties rules here: T-bones, New York strip steaks, Chicago filets and king cuts. Appetizers include Mexican specials like crunchy corn tortillas, chili nachos, quesadillas and fajitas. Chicken lovers should try the honey chicken or chicken wings, dishes you’re unlikely find elsewhere in town.
Hamburgers, baconburgers, and cheeseburgers complete the menu. Desserts include such Amercan favorites as brownies, apple crunch, New York cheesecake and lime pie. €
Via Flaminia Vecchia, 525/527 tel. 06.3333 297 Closed Monday. Open til midnight.
Also at Via Francesco Crispi, 29/31 tel. 06.678 7650 (Piazza Barberini)
and at Via Santa Dorotea 21, tel 06 588 2079 (Trastevere)

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In Rome Now Travel Guide: Restaurants Rome, Italy Prati and Northside