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Rome Restaurant Suggestions


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#31 Steve R.

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Posted 06 August 2014 - 04:17 PM

Since Mitch asked (it doesn't take much to get me going).  Several years ago, in Rome with Rich & Peg for a few days, we all went to Checchino dal 1887 and Perilli, both in Testaccio.  The food (& the room) at Perilli is no frills basic restaurant box and the service can be less than friendly unless you make an effort to break the ice.  However, Ginny & I have grown to love the place and have now been back probably 4-6 times.  I especially love the rigatoni con pajata (look it up) there.  Checchino dal 1887 is a more upscale place, noted for its incredible wine list at very reasonable prices.  Yes, the wine was excellent, but the food seemed tired and the owner and staff absolutely disinterested.  Maybe a bad night, but I didn't get that feeling.  Maureen Fant and I think Katie Parla both favor it, but Eliz. Minchilli and I pick Perilli for the food.  Another interesting place in Testaccio is Flavio al Velavedotto, which seems to cater to locals.  Ginny & I went back a couple of times and had very nice mid-range (actually pretty inexpensive) meals there.  It has an outdoor inner courtyard & some limited roof deck seating for when the weather cooperates.  They also have a wall of wine bottles and you go and pick your bottle(s) from there.  Prices are clearly marked.  Great idea, very nice range.

 

The old market in Testaccio, which we loved, has been closed down and moved to a modern structure.  We didn't love the new place.  Better markets elsewhere in Rome.


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#32 Sneakeater

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Posted 06 August 2014 - 04:29 PM

You've GOT to go to Testaccio. You've just GOT to.
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#33 Sneakeater

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Posted 06 August 2014 - 04:30 PM

OTOH, you and your family might find Piperno much less of a must than I do.
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#34 joethefoodie

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Posted 06 August 2014 - 05:45 PM

The old market in Testaccio, which we loved, has been closed down and moved to a modern structure.  We didn't love the new place.  Better markets elsewhere in Rome.

I liked the new market okay; it's not the old one, but it does have that awesome Roman sandwich place I mentioned above.  We like Perilli and Flavio - they're sort of classics.

 

Re: Piperno, et.al. The whole Jewish restaurant in the ghetto thing is a whole other argument. I consistently heard how Sora Margerita was no good anymore, too many tourists, blah blah blah.  But the 4 of us had a quite outstanding lunch there, so there's that.  They don't fuck up cacio e pepe, and they usually are cooking some lamb or something for the daily special.



#35 joethefoodie

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Posted 06 August 2014 - 05:47 PM

By the way, Steve, I think you nailed Checcino perfectly. It has been a few trips since we've eaten there, but even then everybody was just going through the motions.



#36 Anthony Bonner

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Posted 06 August 2014 - 05:51 PM

Serious question. What's the appeal here?

It sounds like every place is a clip joint or on the verge of being clip joint. And the few places that are not may or may not be potentially hostile to tourists.

Go to Spain.

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#37 joethefoodie

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Posted 06 August 2014 - 06:08 PM

Who said that?

 

One thing to remember about Rome is that it's a city that doesn't have a thousand restaurants opening every year (like say, NY or Paris). 

 

You can still eat and drink very well here, for a lot less money than either of the cities I mentioned above.  You just gotta get pointed in the right direction and away from the wrong direction.

 

For instance, the old skool wine bar Il Goccetto is great. And so is the new school wine bar in the Monti - Ai Tre Scalini (which my wife likes more due to its, shall we say, guys behind the bar). Totally different atmospheres, totally different clientele. And if you want to drink some wine while staring at 3,000 year-old Trajan's Column, there's new, new skool wine bar Enoteca Provincia Romana.

 

Overall, I think the appeal here is that it's fucking Rome.



#38 Steve R.

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Posted 06 August 2014 - 06:24 PM

I think Bonner is of the opinion that Rome is ruin-ed  :blush:  (get it?…. Roman ruins?!  good one, huh?)

 

But seriously folks…. who said they were all "clip joints"?  A little more attitude than Florence or Venice (in general) but, overall, better pickin's than random dining in NYC (or Brooklyn for that matter).


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#39 joethefoodie

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Posted 06 August 2014 - 06:42 PM

That's a good one!

 

Just like anywhere (well, maybe not Ssam Bar in the early days ;) ), if you don't act like a douche, and you say hello (in their language) and have a reservation, and say please and thank you, you'll be fine.

 

I find it's universally pretty easy to get service staff on my side; after all, I'm so fucking charming!



#40 Sneakeater

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Posted 06 August 2014 - 06:46 PM

I don't want to burst any bubbles, Joe, but I think it's Sig Eater.
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#41 joethefoodie

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Posted 06 August 2014 - 07:00 PM

I don't want to burst any bubbles, Joe, but I think it's Sig Eater.

Hmmm.  She calls me a "woo-er."  I prefer bullshit artist, but...

 

Certainly in France it's she, as she speaks some French, and has been told by a French woman that her accent is beautiful.



#42 Anthony Bonner

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Posted 06 August 2014 - 07:55 PM

go to the thread of any other major city in Europe here or on chowhound and you'll never see as many caveats as you do on a Rome thread.


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#43 balex

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Posted 06 August 2014 - 08:05 PM

 

We've spent some time there over the past several years, but I'm not sure that the places we've enjoyed (other than Charles' choices) are what you're looking for.  A couple in Testaccio are informal, specializing in old Roman offal based stuff.  Send me a pm if you want details.  Have fun.

But here's the thing; this is where you're getting the best food in Rome.

 

The couple we traveled with last November went to Metamorfosi one night for dinner. Took 4-5 hours, was very expensive, and at the end they decided that much of the food was stuff they could pretty much eat in any fine food city, say San Francisco, or New York, or...  Now, I know KP likes it a lot, but she's "stuck" eating Roman food all the time.

 

Of course, it's my own taste, but when we travel to a city like Rome, we like to eat traditional Roman food.

 

That means you should mention your favorite Testaccio place!

 

 

I agree about Metamorfosi -- best to go to the good trad places unless you live there and are completely fed up with trad food.



#44 joethefoodie

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Posted 07 August 2014 - 03:06 AM

go to the thread of any other major city in Europe here or on chowhound and you'll never see as many caveats as you do on a Rome thread.

can't be bothered...trust me, the ch paris threads have plenty of caveats.

 

and seriously, you don't understand the appeal of Rome?



#45 Sneakeater

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Posted 07 August 2014 - 03:10 AM

You know what? The first time I went to Rome, I actually sort of expected not to like it. I thought it would be touristy and overdone.

But, as I think Joe already put it, it's fucking Rome. You know?
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