You don’t have to be an expert on Italy to know that, when it comes to Rome, there are certain places you just have to check out. Expedia travellers are a savvy bunch as we tend to visit the Eternal city in shoulder season – taking advantage of the pleasant climate and great hotel deals. What they may not know, however, is where to eat. With our list of suggested gourmet hot spots below, you’ll be armed with even more knowledge on where to get the most authentic Italian meals in town.
Just a short stroll from the Pantheon (built 1800 years ago, the temple stands as a magnificent reminder of the great Roman Empire), you’ll find Piazza di Sant’Eustachio and the charming Sant’Eustachio coffee shop. Dating back to 1938, the caffe isn’t as old as Rome’s ancient landmarks but it’s certainly a local institution. Stand at the original stainless steel bar and choose an espresso or a cappuccino – served zuccherato (with sugar) unless requested otherwise. Away from the hustle and happy hour bars of Campo de’ Fiori, you’ll find locals stopping for their daily fix of vino at bottle shop and wine bar Antico (Via Monte della Farina 37).
Tick off another essential Italy experience and grab a slice of pizza from hole-in-the-wall eatery Pizzeria 00100 in Testaccio (Via Giovanni Branca 88). They churn out hundreds of trappizzini (triangles of pizza bianca stuffed with savoury fillings) a day. What about dessert? Gelateria Gracchi (Via dei Gracchi 272) doesn’t worry about fancy fit-outs, preferring instead to focus on flavour and fresh fruit. Their pistachio ice cream, made with roasted nuts from the slopes of Mount Etna, sells out in seconds.
Get familiar with Italy’s most recent foodie preoccupation – creative cuisine – at Pastificio San Lorenzo (Via Tiburtina 196). Giving traditional dishes a modern twist, this place is surely in line for a Michelin star. Sitting in a former pasta factory in the once gritty, now cool neighbourhood of San Lorenzo, the dining room channels industrial chic with white tiles, exposed concrete cinder-blocks and marble-topped tables. Arrive early to check out Pastificio Cerere, the contemporary art space next door.