Taste Roman dishes at our favourite local restaurants
From al dente carbonara and coda alla vaccinara, to supplÌ and fried zucchini- there’s nothing quite like traditional Roman food. The best places to indulge in traditional Italian cuisine in Rome are, of course, the classic osterie and trattorie Rome famous for. Feast your eyes on a complete guide to the best local Roman restaurants.
Via dei Vascellari, 29 (Trastevere)
Rustic decor, hefty portions, and efficient service – that is how one could describe the well-oiled machine that is Da Enzo. They know what they’re doing and they do it really well. The menu does not have overwhelming choice – expect classic pasta dishes and meat dishes, with daily specials of traditional recipes, as well as authentic desserts (the crostata di visciole is divine.) It’s a bit chaotic, and is always packed but if you’re looking for a typical osteria and you’re on a modest budget – this is the place.
Piazza dei Ponziani, 7 (Trastevere)
Bigger than Da Enzo, but still as hectic and bustling. You have all the classic primi: gricia, amatriciana, carbonara as well as the traditional selection of secondi (they also have a good seafood selection). Opening up onto a quaint little piazza, Da Teo is the ideal trattoria for outdoor lunching.
Trattoria Da Augusto
Piazza Dè Renzi, 15 (Trastevere)
Just like its rustic, no-frills counterparts, Trattoria Da Augusto has been bringing the best Roman culinary tradition to the table since 1954. On the menu puntarelle, first courses made with fresh pasta, boiled meat, stew and other tasty dishes. With its beautiful little piazza and bustling scene, it seems like Time has stopped in this place.
Piazza delle Coppelle, 44 (Centro Storico)
Right across from “osteria delle coppelle” you will find this hidden gem. Named after the familiar pasta style known all around the world, Maccheroni is your typical Roman restaurant with a diverse selection of dishes to choose from. With a nice outside seating area as well, you’ll be feeling like a local in no time.
Trattoria da Cesare al Casaletto
Via del Casaletto, 45 (Monteverde)
Tucked away in Monteverde, “Da Cesare” as it’s commonly referred to by locals who frequent it, is one Rome’s best-kept secrets. The dining room is not particularly beautiful, but you go for the food, and it has been hailed as one of the best. Romans know it well, and go when they have a hankering for their favorite local dish. Book well in advance.
Checco er Carettiere
Via Benedetta, 10 (Trastevere)
Hiding behind Piazza Trilussa, the inconspicuous Checco is made up of two restaurants: the first- a spacious, classic Italian restaurant with linen tablecloths and an encyclopedic wine list; the second, which is accessed by a separate door, a cozy little trattoria with a one-page menu. Both casual Checco and upscale Checco have the same quality food, although the casual trattoria has a much simpler menu.
Via Petrarca, 13 (Esquilino)
It looks small at first glance, but Da Danilo has underground cavern like dining room below that provides this spot with an intimate, romantic ambiance. Expect classic roman dishes, an extensive wine list, and waiters with character, (don’t even think about asking for rigatoni instead of bucatini for your carbonara.)
Via Marmorata, 39 (Testaccio)
Located in Testaccio, Perilli has been around since the early 1900s and is a Roman institution. Simple, elegant, quiet and unpretentious, this trattoria is always filled with families and groups of friends for weekend lunches (highly recommend booking in advance.) The classic Roman primi: carbonara, amatriciana and gricia, as well as the typical secondi: abbacchio al forno and coda alla vaccinara are always prepared with the care and attention that distinguishes Perilli.
Via Giovanni da Empoli, 5 (Ostiense)
While not your typical super-classic Roman restaurant, Trattoria Pennestri is definitely the place to go for an incredible contemporary Roman dining experience. A cozy locale where you can taste delicious Roman dishes with a twist. Try the pasta e fagioli to be pleasantly surprised. And to accompany your meal, browse through their wine list offering more than 60 Italian wines.
Osteria Fratelli Mori
Via dei Conciatori, 10 (Testaccio)
Osteria Fratelli Mori is located on Via dei Conciatori 10, footsteps from the Piramide Cestia. The restaurant is captained by Alessandro and Francesco Mori and their mother, Giuliana. Together, they bring the same passion and respect for quality that led their father, Ambrogio, to open the osteria back in 2004. Here you will find dishes that merge traditional Roman cuisine with socialising. The restaurant is characterized by three large rooms and a small outdoor dehor. The atmosphere is warm and familiar and the staff members are always courteous and smiling. Among the most popular dishes you’ll find the Carbonara, the Polpette di bollito, the guancia di maialino iberico (Iberian pig’s cheek) and Giuliana’s outstanding crostate (tarts).
Felice a Testaccio
Via Mastro Giorgio, 29 (Testaccio)
Now gentrified chic local Roman hotspot, Felice’s menu boasts classic roman dishes, with daily specials based on Roman tradition “giovedi gnocchi, venerdi pesce” etc. The sleek, modern dining room attracts a younger, more showy crowd than the classic osteria, and you have to book in advance.
Armando al Pantheon
Salita dei Crescenzi, 31 (Pantheon)
The ultimate Roman experience: classic Italian cuisine, right next to the Pantheon. Although it is not without the usual crowd of tourists, Armando is known by locals for doing the classic Roman cuisine justice. The restaurant has a long family tradition, serving traditional Roman specialties made with quality raw materials since 1961 .
Flavio al Velavevodetto
Via di Monte Testaccio, 97 (Testaccio)
If you’re in the Testaccio neighbourhood, another trattoria you can’t miss is Flavio al Velavevodetto. We all have our favorite Roman pasta, and for the cacio e pepe lovers, Flavio is the place to go. Not that the others aren’t divine, they are (the gricia is one of my favorite ones in Rome)! They also have a great wine selection and the setting is characteristic, with an outdoor terrace open during the summer.
Via Goffredo Mameli, 23 (Trastevere)
After Proloco DOL (Di Origine Laziale), Proloco Trastevere arrives offering food and products from the Lazio region right in Trastevere. The menu is a triumph of dishes from Rome and the Lazio region. This is the place to order a perfectly executed gricia, amatriciana or carbonara, but also taste amazing cured meats and cheeses from our region. Get ready to taste a mix between ancient cooking methods and modern techniques!