Rome's best places to eat and drink (2023)

Rome's best places to eat and drink (1)
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Rome's food scene is as fascinating and eclectic as its history. Generational trattorias serving up the classics, young Roman chefs flirting with tradition and neon lit cocktail bars doing mixology right. Here, the old mixes with the new on every level and exciting trends continue to bolster the culinary scene to consistently position it as one of the world's great food capitals.


Rome's best places to eat and drink (2)

Photo: Zia

See Also

  • Rome travel guide

Contemporary fine dining

Modest fine dining and wining that never disappoints, Antonio Ziantoni's precision, passion and talent is boundless. Awarded a star in the Michelin guide within its first year, the menu changes seasonally as you'd expect and showcases variety meats like sweetbreads and prize cuts from duck to guinea fowl. Each season the risotto and pastas are stand out and acclaimed pastry chef Christian Marasca's delights dazzle, particularly the spectacular Tourbillon. With delightfully competent staff, the vibe here is creative and innovative but Zia isn't fussy and the overall experience leaves you satisfied - and quite simply - plain happy.

Via Goffredo Mameli, 45, 00153, Rome, +39 06 2348 8093,


Rome's best places to eat and drink (3)

Photo: Pulejo

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Nordic interiors, Italian flavours

Pulejo in Rome's Prati district is on the cusp of greatness (by the time you get here, it will most likely have a Michelin star!). Chef and owner Davide Puleio says his brand of fine dining is about comfort and service, not formality and this philosophy permeates his menu. His humble rise has taken him to London, Copenhagen, Milan and finally back to his native Rome. Signature dish, Mi-Ro is saffron risotto topped with oxtail and is Milan and Rome on a plate. Minimalist interiors, creative dishes and unceremonious service, Rome's opening of the year is here to stay.

Via dei Gracchi, 31, 00192 Rome, +39 06 8595 6532,

Rimessa Roscioli

Wine tasting and pairing experience

Food lovers and wine aficionados will love Rimessa Roscioli. Wine tasting dinners have you sampling 8 wines with cured meats, fresh mozzarella and seasonal specialities, plus a Roman pasta dish and dessert. The Roscioli name in Rome is synonymous with prized food and wine outlets from deli-style Roscioli Salumeria to Antico Forno Roscioli for bread and pizza and Caffè Roscioli (hands down best club sandwich in town). And so, as reputation would have it - Rimessa Roscioli doesn't disappoint either. Cooking classes are available too as is an international wine club to have favourite drops delivered to your door.

Via del Conservatorio, 58, 00186, Rome, +39 06 6880 3914,

Seu Illuminati

Rome's best places to eat and drink (5)

Photo: Seu Illuminati

Pizza innovation

For gourmet pizza, you can't go past Seu Illuminati. Pier Daniele Seu started off his career with the best in Rome, Gabriele Bonci, but has put his own stamp on this city. Together with wife, Valeria Zuppardo he pushes boundaries at this modern pizza restaurant in the quieter part of Trastevere. His pizza is long leavened making it soft and airy and flirts with ingredients. The classics are on the menu but each season brings highly anticipated new creations with anything from truffles and liquorice to cocoa and coffee. Don't forget to start with fritti (fried treats) like the locals do and leave room for indulgent dessert pizza slices, rarely seen in Rome.

Via Angelo Bargoni, 10 - 18, 00153 Rome, +39 06 588 3384,


Rome's best places to eat and drink (6)

Photo: Marzapane

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Immaculate bistro dining

Refined yet homely, sophisticated but unpretentious, Marzapane is casual and fine dining at the same time. In an unassuming locale that looks more like a townhouse you'd expect in London instead of Rome, the interiors here are just as elegant and clean lined. Chef Tommaso Tonini has had more than his fair share of Michelin experience and guides the kitchen with tasting menus that centre on prized produce that's been smoked, ash or carbon baked, flame grilled or cooked in clay pots.

Via Flaminia, 64, 00196 Rome, +39 06 6478 1692,


Unforgettable flavours, stunning setting

What began in 2014 as a hole-in-the-wall in Trastevere, all-women owned Pianostrada Laboratorio di Cucina has quietly transformed into a local institution. Their house baked focaccia stuffed with mortadella and ricotta or topped with prosciutto and figs are not to be missed. The deconstructed tempura fried Roman zucchini flowers and daily pasta specials are a hit too. Sit at the open kitchen counter, one of the vintage design table settings or out in the bijou fairy-light adorned garden.

Via delle Zoccolette, 22, 00186, Rome, +39 06 8957 2296,

Drink Kong

Rome's best places to eat and drink (8)

Photo: Alberto Blasetti/Drink Kong

Bright lights and impeccable cocktails

Slick interiors, arcade games and neon lights might try to distract, but your first sip of a Patrick Pistolesi cocktail is what will leave the lasting memory. The Irish-Roman barman revolutionised mixology in Rome and has the accolades to prove it. Cocktails here are mood-based and things like lobster rolls, bao and tacos are on the menu at Rome's only entry on the World 50 Best Bars list.

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Piazza di S. Martino Ai Monti, 8, 00154 Rome, +39 06 2348 8666,

Santo Palato

Rome's best places to eat and drink (9)

Photo: Santo Palato

Modern day trattoria, vintage vibe

Rome will be forever grateful that Abruzzo native Sara Cicolini walked away from her medicine studies to become a chef! Hailed for redefining the concept of the traditional Roman trattoria, Santo Palato predominantly serves up age-old quinto quarto (Roman for nose-to-tail cuisine) dishes like tripe and pan-fried innards. Her cuisine is best described as ethical, simple and creative. The changing daily blackboard keeps regular diners here on their toes and hot tip: the carbonara is silky and unforgettable.

Piazza Tarquinia, 4 a/b, 00183 Rome, +39 06 7720 7354,

Caffè Doria

Rome's best places to eat and drink (10)

Photo: Andrea Di Lorenzo/Caffe Doria

Cocktails and artworks

Caffè Doria sits within the Galleria Doria Pamphilij, an underrated gallery that boasts the city's most impressive private art collection. Sip expertly mixed cocktails while admiring a Caravaggio in the elegant indoor space or head to the courtyard with its imposing columns for the real showstopper. The creative drinks list plays with infusions and syrups, giving a savoury touch with ingredients like basil and capers - think, a Champagne Risotto cocktail that comes complete with a rice crisp. Add to that, delectable canapés and a gin trolley with over 80 labels.

Galleria Doria Pamphilj, Via della, Gatta, 1, 00186 Rome, +39 06 679 3805,

Da Enzo al 29

Rome's best places to eat and drink (11)

Photo: Da Enzo al 29

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Classic Roman cuisine and setting

You will need to line up (and for a while) to snag a table at Trastevere's most popular trattoria which has developed a cult-like following. Thankfully fame hasn't impacted the quality here and the service (friendly and rough around the edges) and dishes (high comfort and high quality) are exactly what they should be. Start off with the burrata; mozzarella and anchovy stuffed zucchini flowers; and when they're in season, golden fried artichokes. The Roman pasta quartet (carbonara, amatriciana, cacio e pepe, gricia) never disappoints nor does the coda alla vaccinara (oxtail). Don't leave without trying the mascarpone and wild strawberry mousse.

Via dei Vascellari, 29, 00153 Rome, +39 06 581 2260,

Armando al Pantheon

Rome's best places to eat and drink (12)

Photo: Armando al Pantheon

Carbonara with a view

Steps from the Pantheon, the Gargioli family have served up outstanding Roman fare here for 6 decades. The classics reign supreme from the carbonara and cacio e pepe to saltimbocca alla romana (pan-fried prosciutto and sage-topped veal cutlets). And whatever is in season ends up on the plate too from puntarelle (Catalonian chicory served with a lemon, olive oil and anchovy dressing) in the cooler months, through to spring, artichokes served braised with calamint or twice fried. Reservations can be made online - don't turn up without one.

Salita de' Crescenzi, 31, 00186 Rome, +39 06 6880 3034,

Retro Vino and Caffè

Rome's best places to eat and drink (13)

Photo: Retro Vino and Caffè

Small plates and natural wines

The offshoot of Rome's foraging gem Retrobottega, the feel here is relaxed. The all-day coffee and wine bar morphs slowly from breakfast to brunch, lunch to dinner and vino or caffè anytime in between. The ever changing and thought-provoking menu consists of share dishes - think perfectly stuffed pastas and small creative vegetable plates - and can be enjoyed inside on the communal table or outdoors. With an expansive natural wine list, any one of the Retro brands are for hardcore food and wine lovers.

Via d'Ascanio, 26a, 00186 Rome, +39 06 6813 6310,

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