Here’s Part Two of our feasting in Rome. If you missed Part One, here’s a link to the other restaurants we ate at.
La Buca di Ripetta
Via Ripetta, 36 / Tél: 06 321 93 91
Similar to Paris, many restaurants are closed on Sundays, so we didn’t have that many dinner options. Our friend had recommended this restaurant, and luckily, it was open and had last-minute availability. Seated in a corner table at the back of the restaurant, we had a nice view of the dining room and other guests (including the exhausted tween boy next to us who ended up sleeping on the bench seat). Although I found some bones in my fish (a sure sign that the restaurant isn’t quite as good as it should be), the food was solid and service was friendly enough.
Recommendation: You’ll be surrounded by tourists, but the food is good and it’s slightly “fancier” than some of the other restaurants you might stumble upon. Most importantly – it’s open on Sunday nights.
Piazza Campo de Fiori, 53 / Tél: 06 88 97 26 97
Situated in Piazza de Campo de Fiori, we ended up at this restaurant as it was one of the few decent-looking ones that was still open at 4pm. Similar to Paris, many restaurants close between 3pm and 7pm between lunch and dinner. Although this isn’t fine dining, it had a great view over the piazza, the service was very friendly, if not the friendliest out of all the restaurants we ate at, and the food was decent enough. To start, the bruschetta is definitely lackluster; in fact, I think I could’ve done better chez moi. However, the cacio e pepe I had was flavorful and cooked perfectly al dente – something that can’t be said for the pasta Rio had at Angelino ai Fori dal 1947.
Recommendation: If you lost track of time sight-seeing and find yourself trying to find a decent restaurant that’s open by Piazza Campo de Fiori, this is a good option.
Piazza del Paradiso, 65 / Tél: 06 686 17 17
For our last night in Rome, we decided to try another recommendation from the nice Italian lady I met on the plane. This was definitely the “fanciest” of restaurants we went to during our trip. Located in the former Theatre of Pompeii, you’re eating in a dining room (pictured above) that was built around 63 B.C. Yes, you read that correctly, 63 B.C! Unfortunately, we had eaten so much at lunch, we weren’t that hungry for dinner. However, that didn’t stop us from ordering a four course meal for our last night. Although the service was really slow in the beginning (the waiter did apologize for it), the food was really good. In fact, Rio deemed the bucatini all’amatriciana here the best out of all the restaurants we ate at. Although there were quite a few (loud) tourists, there were plenty of locals who ate here, which is always a good sign.
Recommendation: A must if you’re looking for a “fine dining” experience in Rome.
Vicolo del Bologna, 45 / Tél: 06 588 05 16
One neighborhood we hadn’t gotten a chance to check out during our stay in Rome was the Trastevere neighborhood, a once-gritty area that’s now très cool and known for its nightlife. Since the only time we had pizza during our trip was pretty bad (the same spot where Rio had overcooked pasta), we decided we should find a restaurant that was known for authentic Roman pizza while exploring the neighborhood – and that’s how we decided upon Dar Poeta. The restaurant had high reviews and apparently was recommended by travel expert Rick Steve (although, we didn’t know that before heading there), and it made for a satisfying last meal in Rome.
Recommendation: The pizza is delicious and the prices are very affordable. I wouldn’t recommend the mushroom salad though – it’s literally just greens and sliced fresh mushrooms. However, if you don’t want to be surrounded by tourists, skip it.