The best aperitivo bars in Rome

Whether you’re a local or a visitor, you can’t miss out on aperitivo, namely Italian happy hour. It doesn’t matter which day of the week it is, from 6pm – 9pm, Romans love to indulge in this delicious ritual. We get off work and meet with friends to have some drinks and nibble on some yummy food. From wine to beer and cocktails, the drink selection is vast and also includes nonalcoholic drinks. Depending on the bar you’re at, the happy hour formula changes. You can either have a happy hour buffet included with your drink, some complimentary chips, nuts and olives included with your drink, or choose from a happy hour menu where you pay your food separately. I’m more of a “choose your own items from the menu” type of gal! Here, I’ve selected some of my favorite aperitivo bars in Rome!

Sorpasso (Prati)

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 bar e frequented all hours of the day. But my favorite time to visit Sorpasso is during aperitivo, where you’ll be sipping velvety red wines and tasting knife-cut cold cuts and cheeses coming from their charcuterie station. There is both an indoor and outdoor area, the setting is warm, with stacks of wine bottles, hanging prosciuttos, vaulted brick ceilings and a pleasant atmosphere.  A heads up: this place is always packed, so don’t get here after 6.30pm for aperitivo. In case you don’t find a table, you can always order a glass at the counter and enjoy it outside!

 Via Properzio, 31/33
Monday – Friday 7.30am – 1am / Saturday 9am – 1am
€15 +

Sorpasso aperitivo bar in Rome

Sottosopra (Trastevere)

If you’re searching for a relaxing aperitivo in Trastevere, search no more. Sottosopra, located just off Piazza Trilussa, is my favorite place for aperitivo in Trastevere. Wine barrels used as tables, a relaxing vibe, a friendly service and some delicious focaccias await you. The menu offers a variety of foods from pastas and carpaccios to yummy burgers and focaccias with bresaola, mortadella and more. Definitely order the one with bresaola and rughetta! The wine selection, while small, is very good, and don’t get me started on the perfect cocktails!

Via Di Ponte Sisto, 67
Sunday – Thursday 3pm – 12am / Friday – Saturday 5pm – 2am /Closed Tuesdays

Sottosopra aperitivo in Trastevere

Duke’s (Parioli)

Swing by at Duke’s at 7pm to have the best happy hour in Rome. You won’t find anything like it  in terms of variety, presentation and price. Food and drinks are 50% off during happy hour (7pm – 8.30pm), so it’s the perfect time to taste those Duke’s signature cocktails, and there is one in particular  you have to try: the COSMOPOLITAN! Along with great cocktails (and/or wine and beer) order some delicious food, from guacamole to tempura and sushi all the way to filet mignon bites with different yummy sauces. My favourites are the footlooseangus tartareangus royal, tuna tartare and the tempura. Definitely don’t get here after 7pm as you’ll have to wait in line for a table!

 Viale Parioli, 200
 8.30pm – 12am Tuesday – Saturday (Sep-June) / Monday – Friday (July – August)
€15 +

the best restaurants and bars in parioli rome

Zuma (Tridente)

After a stroll in the center, or after an art exhibition, you cannot miss out on aperitivo. And happy hour at Zuma  is definitely where you should go. On the fifth floor of Palazzo Fendi, you will find Zuma’s beautiful rooftop bar.  A beautiful view of Rome and the Spanish Steps, along with chill-out vibes floating in the air, an in-vogue atmosphere and Zuma’s wow signature cocktails are just some of the reasons why you have to go. And of course, what kind of aperitivo would it be if you couldn’t nibble on anything? Lucky for you, Zuma thinks of everything, and its delicious snack list is waiting for you (order the crunchy tempura). Aperitivo starts at 6pm.

 Via della Fontanella di Borghese, 48
Sunday – Thursday 6pm – 1am / Friday – Saturday 6pm – 2am
€15 +

Terrazza Borromini (Piazza Navona)

From spring to fall, Terrazza Borromini is the go-to place for a fantastic aperitivo with a view.  As the name suggests, Terrazza Borromini is a rooftop bar, located on the last floor of the Eitch Hotel. As you arrive to the terrace, your jaw will drop because of the view. From Piazza Navona to the Pantheon and the Supreme Court, you can see pretty much everything from here. The view is absolutely sensational and the place is very chic with lovely wrought iron sofas. For drinks, go for a refreshing glass of white wine or with the signature cocktails. Included in the drink price are two small tasting plates of whatever is on the menu that day. Definitely a place not to miss. Just a heads up, there are no umbrellas on this rooftop bar, which means there’s nothing to provide shade from the sun in the hot summer months so don’t get here too early! A reservation is a must at Terrazza Borromini, and be sure to specify that it’s for the rooftop bar and not the restaurant!

Via di Santa Maria dell’Anima, 30
Monday – Sunday 12pm – 12am

rooftop aperitivo in rome

Panificio Nazzareno (Ponte Milvio)

If you’re a pizza and cold-cuts lover, Panificio Nazzareno will be love at first sight. Just like their neighbouring bar Charlie Vini & Cucina, expect amazing happy hour boards and great wines and cocktails at Panificio Nazzareno. It’s right on Piazzale di Ponte Milvio, next to Aristocampo, and is a major address for aperitivo in this neighbourhood. You can either have a glass of wine, a bottle, a beer or a cocktail, and taste some delicious small homemade pizzas with delicious toppings and yummy cured meats. The service is friendly and efficient.

Piazzale di Ponte Milvio, 35
 Monday- Sunday from 7am – 2am

Gotha Cocktail Bar (Parioli)

Happy hour or after dinner? This is surely a dilemma. Gotha is a guarantee. It’s one of my favorite places in Parioli for a happy hour or an after dinner drink. The place is chic, mostly frequented by Italians. The wine selection is exceptional, with labels like Banfi and Jerman. But let’s get to happy hour! Gotha has delicious happy hour boards to offer! From prosciutto and salame to cheese and small pizzas, Gotha serves some real good cold-cuts and cheeses!  There is also the sushi option, but I always prefer to go with the classic happy hour board! The staff at this bar is wonderful, very friendly!

Viale Parioli, 144
Monday – Sunday 6pm – 2am

the best restaurants and bars in parioli rome

La Zanzara (Prati)

Situated on Via Crescenzio, footsteps from Piazza Cavour and Piazza del Risorgimento, La Zanzara is one of Rome’s trendiest bars and restaurants. While it’s also very famous for its restaurant, my favorite part of La Zanzara is its aperitivo. If you intend to indulge in a yummy happy hour, don’t arrive after 6.30pm, you won’t find a free table. From 6.30pm – 8.30pm they serve their happy hour finger foods to your table, where you can choose from a variety of small portion finger foods, from zucchini flower tempura to melanzane alla parmigiana and other creative recipes while you sip your cocktail, wine or beer. There is both an indoor and outdoor area and the setting is very fashionable.

Via Crescenzio, 84
Monday – Friday 7.30am – 2am / Saturday – Sunday 8am – 2am

Where to eat and drink in Prati Rome

Ai Tre Scalini (Monti)

If you’re strolling through the Monti neighbourhood in search of the perfect aperitivo spot, you have to get yourself to Ai Tre Scalini, an institution in Monti. It’s a truly enchanting place with a homey atmosphere, vaulted ceilings and wooden table and chairs. Stacks of wine bottles, yummy regional food, and a friendly service await you. Sit down, order a glass of wine and a cold cuts and cheese plate to start off, and then go ahead and taste some of their cooked dishes. All products and seasonal, so check the blackboards to see what’s available! Just a heads up, this place is always crowded, try getting here before 7pm or you’ll have to wait a bit!

Via Panisperna, 251
Monday – Sunday 12.30pm – 1am

ai tre scalini aperitivo in monti

Il Goccetto (Campo de’ Fiori)

Trying to stumble upon the perfect Roman wine bar? Il Goccetto is the place! A cozy atmosphere, a charming decor typical of an historic enoteca and delicious food proposals. If you’re into wine, this is for sure the perfect place to stop for happy hour. Step inside to be welcomed into a tiny, rustic and homey space, adorned with 800 different wine labels! Yes, you read that right! And it gets better, if you’re in the mood for just one glass of wine, their wine by-the-glass list has over 60 different wines which change all the time! It’s the perfect occasion to do some wine tasting! And not just wine tasting, Il Goccetto also has delicious cold cuts and cheese plates for you to order, as well as other yummy food to nibble on!

Via dei Banchi Vecchi, 14
Monday 6.30pm – 12am / Tuesday – Saturday 12pm – 2.30pm, 6.30pm – 12am

il goccetto aperitivo piazza navona

Ercoli (Parioli)

Cured meats, cold-cuts and cheeses await you at Ercoli Parioli. Expect delicious happy hour boards, outstanding wines, a friendly staff and  a Vermouth bar!  Ercoli is the perfect place to indulge in Italian and international treats, from patanegra to parma ham, to truffled cheeses and different types of breads, this is happy hour oasis!  There’s both an indoor and outdoor area, the indoor looks like a mix between a shop and a bistrot, and has a Salumeria counter where you can admire all of the fresh products (and even buy them)! The cured meats and cheeses are delightful, as is their wine selection, just a heads up, it’s a bit expensive, but they have now introduced a happy hour formula: with €12.50 you get a drink plus a happy hour board from 6pm – 8.30pm!

Viale Parioli, 184
Sunday – Wednesday 9am – 1am / Thursday – Saturday 9am – 2am

ercoli aperitivo in rome

Blackmarket Hall (Monti)

Via de Ciancaleoni, 31
Monday – Sunday from 6pm – 2am

Best bars for aperitivo in Rome

In the hip Monti neighborhood, footsteps from the Colosseum, you’ll find this cocktail bar that resembles a 1920s speakeasy. Walk down the stairs to be catapulted in a super cool ambiance with background music floating in the air, dimmed lights and beautifully prepared cocktails. There’s also a small outdoor space with tables, heated during the winter, of course! If you stop by for aperitivo, from 6pm to 8.30pm you can choose from a variety of tasting plates, each served with a complimentary drink from the aperitivo section. I had the Veggy tasting which was delicious! The cured meats and cheese one is also an A-lister.

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I'm the daughter of an Italian family of diplomats, the second of three children, and a global citizen. I've lived in 7 cities around the world, I have a gigantic crush on Italy and my name has been mispronounced more times than I can remember.

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