Sometimes when I’m travelling, I need a break from eating the local cuisine 24/7, especially if it’s a longer trip. Obviously, as a lactose-intolerant living in Rome, I’m not trying to eat Italian all the time (hello, cheese!). Luca and I like to sort of “travel” by eating different cuisines, so we’ve got a few restaurants on rotation for our dates nights, depending on our mood. Check them out!
When I’m needing a break from carbs and need to add a little roughage to my diet (cough, cough!), Luca and I like to go to Insalata Ricca. There are a few different locations around the city, but I can only speak to the one on Largo dei Chiavari in Centro Storico. The service is always quick, and it’s super close to Campo di Fiori for after dinner :] Their list of salads is three pages long! They do also have Italian food (but honestly I’ve never had it) besides the many types of bruschetta to choose from, which we love. Even though it’s in a touristy area, the clientele is still about half locals every time we go!
If you like seafood, don’t miss this spot! There are two locations, but the one in Trastevere is the most convenient (even though the second, in Pietralata, is my favorite because it’s more spacious.) Fishmarket is cool because you basically choose the fish you want, pay up front, and they serve it to you as it’s prepared. They have a chalkboard with the specials of the day, of which there’s always something unique. Service is quick, prices are good, and portions are satisfying!
Luca and I LOVE sushi, and this is the best place in Rome for it, in my opinion! Apparently a lot of people agree because it’s always packed, so book in advance. I love the ambience: it’s a Japanese-Brazilian fusion restaurant, decorated in bright yellows and greens with fun pineapple wallpaper, and filled with lively samba music in the background (although it’s hard to hear over the conversations in the close space.) The sushi rolls are huge and the ingredients are always super fresh. I never fail to order a delicious caipirinha (or two), adorned with fresh fruit (my favorite flavor is the passion fruit!) It’s not the cheapest place, but it’s totally worth it!
Run completely by actual Indians, this restaurant is like a little trip away from Rome for the time I’m there. As soon as I step through the door, the sounds of Monti seem to fall away and all I can hear is the peaceful hush of the restaurant, punctuated by the traditional Indian music. The sumptuous deep red fabrics and the golden statues of Hindu gods totally transport you. The waiters are lovely and helpful. I always get the Vegetarian Menu for €18, which includes naan, appetizers, and a main meal – and I always leave STUFFED without even finishing everything.
Don’t be deterred by the fact that’s it’s not in the center! This is a richer residential area of Rome, so it’s cool to get away from the tourist crowd for a good meal. Take the Metro C line (direction Jonio) to Sant’Agnese Annibaliano and walk five minutes. If you want to make a chill night of it, there’s even a cinema (Lux) that shows movies in their original language. Look on romereview.com for movie times in English.
All I can say is IT’S AMAZING. First, the decor is to die for: chalkboards and mismatched furniture and whimsical art and black-and-white tiled floors. There are three areas to sit: outside on the porch (which even in winter is crowded because of the powerful heat lamps and complimentary crazy-soft blankets – just seen in the above pic :] ), inside in the tea parlor (where you can watch through a huge glass window as the pastry chefs create the amazing desserts), or upstairs in the main dining room. You order your dessert first so that they can make it fresh to be ready for after your dinner: I highly recommend one of the cheesecakes, although literally everything is good. The menu is an international fusion, so anyone should be able to find something to suit his or her taste. Did I mention everything is good???
This bright little bakery is such a cheerful spot, I always feel happy when I’m here! Most likely it’s because of the deeeeee-licious carrot cake that I can’t find anywhere else in Rome. From hamburgers to egg bagels to salads, no one I’ve brought here has ever been dissatisfied with her meal, especially for brunch on Saturday or Sunday! (Don’t forget to reserve in advance if you’re going on one of those days.) Luca and I like to cap off our meal with REAL American coffee in their signature “Love Your Mug” mugs, and drink in the feeling of home (my real home, his dream home, haha.)
Let me know what you think of these spots, or if you have any other suggestions!