Where to eat in Rome: the best places to eat by neighbourhood
People always ask me for restaurant suggestions in Rome. It always occurs to me that I don’t actually have a proper list of my all-time favorite eateries in the Eternal City. But now, I realize that my list of best restaurants in Rome is far overdue. So ladies and gents, here’s my list of where to eat in Rome, divided by neighbourhood. From fresh seafood restaurants to yummy pizzerias, here we go!
Restaurants in the centro storico
Due LadroniPiazza Nicosia, 24
Italian with focus on seafood
I love this seafood restaurant footsteps from Piazza Navona. The indoor is elegant and traditional but there’s also a lovely outdoor area, perfect for those balmy summer nights. The food is delicious, with a mix of everything from meat to pasta and seafood, but the focus is on fish. They have great daily specials so make sure to order one of those yummy pasta dishes (the one with crab is top notch). The seabass is also fantastic and the oysters or tuna tartare with avocado are perfect to start off your meal.
HamaseiVia della Mercede, 35/36
Traditional Japanese restaurant
Footsteps from Piazza di Spagna and Fontana di Trevi, you’ll find one of Rome’s best Japanese restaurants–Hamasei. Known as an institution in Rome, Hamasei serves exceptional sushi, sashimi and also delicious Japanese cooked dishes such as noodles, meat and seafood. The sushi and sashimi are as fresh as they get, the urafutomaki and the sashimi morikomi are remarkable, the tempura perfect and the other Japanese dishes top notch. For lunch, you’ll also find a great selection of bento boxes.
Osteria dell’IngegnoPiazza di Pietra, 45
+39 06 678 0662
Italian restaurant with seasonal ingredients
This bistrot right in Piazza di Pietra is one I absolutely suggest. My friends Vincy and Giulia have been telling me about it for years and only recently I’ve had the chance to try it out. Genuine flavors, lovely service and outstanding food. I can’t recommend this enough. They have a menu plus daily specials written on a black board. I’m not a fan of oxtrail ragout but the pappardelle alla coda alla vaccinara I tasted at Osteria dell’Ingegno completely made me change my mind. Fantastic.
Osteria del SostegnoVia delle Colonnelle, 5
This is the best restaurant in Rome when it comes to pasta all’amatriciana. I still haven’t tasted an amatriciana pasta this good, can you believe it? Simple dishes made with the highest quality ingredients is what sets this restaurant apart. Start off with the focaccine with olive patè and the bruschette with tomatoes. Not to mention the pollo alla cacciatora! The wine selection is exceptional, and their hazelnut ice cream is something you can’t miss out on. Reservations are musts.
ZumaPalazzo Fendi, Via della Fontanella di Borghese, 48
+39 06 9926 6622
Contemporary Japanese rest
Zuma doesn’t need any introductions. It’s known worldwide for its contemporary Japanese cuisine and I’m a big fan, having been to the one in Istanbul and London, too. My favorite one though, is Rome’s! Get yourself a reservation quite in advance or head for aperitivo time! Must-try? The spicy beef tenderloin!
Ginger Sapori e SaluteVia Borgognona 43-46 & Piazza Sant’Eustachio, 54-55
+39 0669940836 / +390668308559
If you need a refreshing juice, smoothie or fruit extract, Ginger Sapori e Salute is the place to go. They also have some yummy pancakes for breakfast and great salads and healthy food options. In other words, if you’re looking for a healthy restaurant in Rome, this is the one to go to. There are two locations in the historic center, one near the Spanish Steps and the other near the Pantheon.
Vivi BistrotPiazza Navona, 2
Everyone knows that most restaurants that line up on Piazza Navona are tourist traps. But Vivi Bostrot is the exception! Not only is the food delicious, the location is fantastic and a great spot for lunch. From the outdoor seating, you have an open window on Piazza Navona. So what to order? Vivi Bistrot serves salads, burgers, pasta and gluten-free dishes as well as a juice bar menu! Definitely don’t miss out on this small corner in paradise.
Restaurants in Trastevere
Le Mani in PastaVia dei Genovesi, 37
Get ready for a real traditional-style trattoria experience in Trastevere. Le Mani in Pasta is a very small trattoria set on two floors with a warm ambiance and super friendly service. The kitchen is very small so keep in mind it could take a little before you get served. The must order? The seabass carpaccio with truffles!
Da TeoPiazza dei Ponziani, 7
Trattoria Da Teo is one of my favorite trattorias in Rome. Located in the less touristy part of Trastevere, this trattoria has some great Roman specialties. The carbonara and the gricia are top-notch, but let’s not forget about the pasta with ricciola and cherry tomatoes and the pasta ai carciofi during artichoke season! The restaurant is very simple (as are all trattorias) with a friendly service and there’s also a lovely outdoor area.
Seu Pizza IlluminatiVia Angelo Bargoni, 10-18
Pier Daniele Seu’s Neapolitan-style pizza in Trastevere is one of the best pizzerias in Rome. If you want to get a taste of the magic of this pizzaiolo, make sure to reserve quite in advance as you’re not the only one! If you’re not lucky enough to find a table and you simply can’t live without tasting his pizza, head to Mercato Centrale in Termini Station!
EggsVia Natale del Grande, 52
Looking for a more contemporary haunt that doesn’t look like a trattoria? Eggs is the perfect place to go! As you might’ve guessed, Eggs’ concept focuses on the use of eggs, in all its kinds, sizes and cooking techniques. If you’re a carbonara lover, there’s a whole menu dedicated to 10 different carbonaras.
Da Enzo al 29Via Dei Vascellari, 29
Da Enzo is a very small trattoria in Trastevere with both indoor and outdoor seating. You can’t make reservations except for 7.30pm dinner reservations, so you can imagine the long line that forms outside. The pastas are exceptional, the fried antipasti perfect and the traditional Roman meat dishes top notch. If you don’t mind waiting in line, this one’s worth it.
Restaurants in Northern Rome
NojoViale di Tor di Quinto, 35
Japanese fusion restaurant
For a trendy ambiance and great Japanese fusion cuisine in the Ponte Milvio neighbourhood, Nojo is the one to go to. Order one of the yummy sushi roles, my personal favorites being the Nojo Roll and the Hamachi Roll. But not before you start off with the black cod wonton or the duck gyoza. To pair with your food you’ll find great cocktails and a wonderful wine selection.
Duke’sViale Parioli, 200
International gourmet restaurant
This is one of my all-time favorite restaurants in Rome. Located in the Parioli neighbourhood, Duke’s offers up amazing cuisine paired with some of the best cocktails in the city. Have a taste of their tuna or angus tartare, their exquisite timberland quail or kingfish tataki, or go for the incredible rib-eye steak. To pair with dinner, a great international wine selection, from wines from California, Chile, New Zealand and more awaits you. If you can’t make it for dinner, go for aperitivo from 7pm to 8.30pm to have everything 50% off!
KiloVia Tirso, 30 & Via della Lega Lombarda, 28-30
+390664781752 / +390637896886
If you’re craving some top-quality meat, Kilo is definitely one of the best restaurants in Rome. Located in the Parioli neighbourhood, this restaurant is famed for its meat cuts and trendy vibe. Kilo only serves “first cuts”: fillet, rib steak and loin steak are served by weight and cooked on the grill with the only addition of coarse salt, so that the flavour and taste are never altered. You can personally choose your meat cut and have them cook it for you. Otherwise, there are great meat skewers you can order. And definitely don’t miss out on the truffle meatballs! Desserts are also quite good. Reserve in advance.
MacelloVia Flaminia, 451
If it’s a good steak out you’re after, Macello is the place to go. Serving a wide variety of quality meat cuts that range from beef to chicken and pork, it’s truly a great find for us carnivores. But what they’re most popular for is their rotating skewer system! Macello serves 14 different types of meats right on your table on skewers! You can choose from skewers with filet, steak, chicken, salsiccia and many others, each accompanied by a sauce. There’s also wine or beer recommended for each one! Reservations are essential.
Panificio NazzarenoPiazzale di Ponte Milvio, 35
All day restaurant with Italian specialties + pizza
Sitting right on Piazzale di Ponte Milvio, Panificio Nazzareno is perfect spot to go by for aperitivo in Ponte Milvio, with their yummy cured meats and cheese boards. But they’re also a great spot for lunch or dinner. They serve Italian cuisine with a mix of dishes from different regions. As of right now they’re focusing on Roman dishes, but you can also find other dishes like their famous salmon tartare. It’s a casual place with good food and wine. And in the summertime, their garden with string lights is super cute.
Restaurants in Prati
Sant’Isidoro Pizza & BolleVia Oslavia, 41
This pizzeria in Prati is love at first sight. Not just a regular pizzeria, Sant’Isidoro has a clear concept in mind: pairing the perfect sparkling wine to pizza. I know, I know, I’ve always thought that beer was the perfect pairing for pizza, but turns out I was wrong. From Prosecco to Franciacorta, get ready for a great selection of bubbles to pair with your Neapolitan style pizzas. Order the carbonara supplì to start followed by the classic margherita with buffalo mozzarella, the amatriciana pizza, the gambero di mazzara pizza or the three tomatoes pizza.
SorpassoVia Properzio, 31-33
Italian restaurant with charcuterie specialties
Tucked away on a small side street of Via Crescenzio, footsteps from Via Cola di Rienzo and Piazza Cavour, you’ll find this charming shabby-chic locale. Cozy, intimate and trendy are the adjectives that best describe this fashionable all-day-all-night venue frequented all hours of the day. From yummy lunches and dinners to delicious aperitivos sipping velvety red wines and tasting knife-cut cured meats and cheeses, Il Sorpasso is the place for any time of the day. Reserve in advance as it’s always packed!
Restaurants in Campo de’ Fiori
PianostradaVia delle Zoccolette, 22
Gourmet Italian restaurant
Surely one of the best restaurants in Rome, Pianostrada is where you go for a trendy night out to taste outstanding Italian cuisine with a twist. Four sisters are the brainchild of this restaurant near Campo de’ Fiori. They’re known for their creative food menu and trendy location. Absolutely order one of their street food panini! They also have an indoor courtyard that’s super charming and also heated in wintertime (yay)!
Osteria Da FortunataVia del Pellegrino, 11-12
This restaurant has to be on your list of traditional Roman restaurants. Situated in Campo dei Fiori, on a corner overlooking the piazza, Osteria da Fortunata serves yummy Roman cuisine. The must-try? The pastas, which are homemade every day. Go for the exquisite carbonara or gricia, while if you’re a vegetarian, the cacio e pepe is a must! There’s also a few outdoor tables for the nice summer months. No reservations allowed.
PierluigiPiazza de ricci, 144
Just a stone’s throw away from Campo de’ Fiori and Piazza Farnese, you’ll find Pierluigi in the beautiful squared Piazza dei Ricci. Absolutely reserve your table outside, right on the piazza, where you can breathe a Roman atmosphere. Order from fresh seafood dishes, from appetizers such as homemade pressed octopus and the spectacular catalana salad with tiger prawns, rucola and cherry tomatoes to main courses such as spaghetti ai crostacei.
Luciano Cucina ItalianaPiazza del Teatro di Pompeo, 18
A friend of mine had told me they serve the best carbonara in Rome at this restaurant footsteps from Piazza Campo de’ Fiori. Turns out, my expectations were quite high and weren’t met. However, I have to say the carbonara was still very good, but what made me put this restaurant on my list of restaurants in Rome is their amazing Ligurian-style stuffed anchovies with ricotta cheese, mint, marjoram and lemon. Heavenly and light, a must order!
Antico Forno RoscioliVia dei Chiavari, 34
Pizza al taglio
While it isn’t a restaurant, if you want to taste one of the best pizza al taglio (pizza by the slice) in Rome, you need to get yourself to Antico Forno Roscioli. Just a stone’s throw away from the piazza, Roscioli is known everyone for its fabulous pizza, quality ingredients and many restaurants in Rome. I’d suggest stopping here for a slice of heavenly pizza bianca, pizza rossa or pizza con patate for a quick lunch.
Forno Campo de’ FioriCampo De’ Fiori, 22
Pizza al taglio
This is another heavenly pizza al taglio place that sits right on Piazza Campo de’ Fiori, next to the famed Carbonara restaurant. A slice of their pizza al taglio will leave you craving for more. You’ve been warned.
Restaurants in Testaccio
Flavio al VelavevodettoVia di Monte Testaccio, 97
In the past years, this restaurant has received the reputation of one of the best Roman cuisine restaurants in the Eternal City. And I have to agree. The tonnarelli cacio e pepe are to die for, the gricia is exceptional, and if you like meat, definitely try the polpette di bollito! The wine selection is also top quality, and includes 200 labels. Reservations are musts.
Felice a TestaccioVia Mastro Giorgio, 29
This historic restaurant in the Testaccio neighbourhood serves top-quality traditional Roman cuisine. While it’s known as an institution for its Roman cuisine, the atmosphere is not the one of a typical Roman trattoria. It’s more chic and the traditional design mixes with some modern details to create a cozy and relaxed setting. Definitely don’t miss out on the heavenly tonnarelli cacio e pepe or the abbacchio al forno. Make reservations in advance.
Restaurants in Monteverde
La Gatta MangionaVia Federico Ozanam, 30
Just above Trastevere in the Monteverde neighbourhood, get ready to taste one of the best pizzerias in Rome. Ever since its opening in 1999, pizzaiolo Giancarlo Casa has been experimenting with gourmet pizza toppings. Try the pizza with robiola, oven-baked pumpkin, and lombo di maiale for a more gourmet option or go with the classic margherita with buffalo mozzarella. Either way, don’t forget to pair your pizza with one of the craft beers!
Trattoria del PesceVia Folco Portinari, 27
This cozy restaurant in the Monteverde neighbourhood is the perfect place to relax and indulge in a one of the best seafood offerings of the capital. Trattoria del Pesce serves top quality seafood personally selected every day from Italian fishing ports. Start off with the Grand crudo di mare, a selection of 6 different seafood cruditè, followed by a spigola al sale. They also have an excellent wine selection and a lovely service. A must-try in Monteverde!
Restaurants in Monti / Esquilino
OttavioVia di S. Croce in Gerusalemme, 9
Hands down the best seafood restaurant in Rome. An old school elegant restaurant in Rome’s San Giovanni area where you can taste the best the sea has to offer. Fresh seafood cruditè served with a simple olive oil and lemon sauce, outstanding astice and mazzancolle alla catalana (one of my favorite dishes ever) and fabulous first courses. Everything here is an A-lister, from the service, to the food and wine selection (wow).
Tempio di IsideVia Pietro Verri, 11
A stone’s throw away from the Colosseum, il Tempio di Iside is my second favorite seafood restaurant in Rome. The seafood cruditè is top notch and their cooked dishes are unbelievably good. If you’re into oysters, this is the place for you. Don’t leave without trying the delicious pasta with prawns and pecorino. I know it doesn’t sound that awesome but it really is. End your meal with the fruttini di gelato!
HasekuraVia dei Serpenti, 27
Traditional Japanese restaurant
This small and cozy restaurant serves authentic Japanese cuisine in the Monti neighbourhood. Great sashimi, great sushi and great cooked options, too. Don’t leave without having their choko-wasabi ice-cream! The restaurant has less than 10 tables to serve, creating a sort of “neighbourhood” restaurant vibe. The decor is a blend between a modern and classic Japanese style. A great find.
FafiuchèVia della Madonna dei Monti, 28
Wine bar and bistrot
Wine lovers, put this place on your list. Right in the Monti neighbourhood, this wine bar and bistrot is the perfect place to taste some Piedmontese specialties in a cozy ambiance. Not just Piedmontese food, Piedmontese wine, too, and lots of it. Definitely let the owners help you out in your wine selection. Pair your food with some yummy fondue, cheese and beef tartare!
Zia RosettaVia urbana, 54
Rosette gourmet + healthy options
If you’ve just finished visiting the Colosseum or you find yourself in the Monti neighbourhood on the hunt for a quick lunch, Zia Rosetta is it. A super small eatery, Zia Rosetta prepares delicious rosettas (a type of Roman bread) with yummy pairings. Aside from the rosettas you can also order delicious salads, fruit smoothies and cooked dishes!