A Taste of History: Rome’s Oldest RestaurantsJuly 20, 2017 10:00 am
Have your history and eat it too at Rome’s oldest restaurants
When in Rome, do as the Romans do and get stuck into its fabulous dining scene. We don’t have to tell you about Rome’s incredible street food and fresh pastas – the international hype speaks for itself – but there are a few grand establishments worth trying that really know what they’re doing. Try the dishes at some of Rome’s oldest restaurants below for a true taste of tradition.
This family-run trattoria is a stalwart of the Roman dining scene, with nearly 500 years of patronage and Italian comfort food. Founded back in 1518 and named after Pietro de la Campana, the restaurateur who opened the establishment, it remains a firm favourite with both locals and tourists – especially because the Pantheon and Piazza Navona are nearby. Try the Artichokes alla Guidia and Saltimbocca for some real classic tastes.
Nearby Sites: Pantheon, Piazza Navona
It’s a story we’re all familiar with – a small town boy named Giuseppe Tozzi leaves the countryside for the big city, dreaming of fame and fortune. Even back in the 1800s, it was a cliche and one that Giuseppe (nicknamed Peppone) owned wholeheartedly. He opened up a traditional restaurant in the 1890s and it’s persisted till now, run by his great grandchildren who bring the flavours of his hometown Abruzzo to the capital.
Nearby Sites: Via Veneto
doooood getting the full Roman offal experience here… starting at 12:00 is veal testicles (best part on this plate), veal small intestine, veal sweetbreads (damn good), repeats from 6-12 position and then veal liver in the middle… all perfectly roasted with some salt that’s it… with squeeze of lemon and it’s magically delicious
Checchino dal 1887
If you’re keen to try quinto quarto – Italian for offal – then you’ve come to the right place. Popular with locals, this restaurant has lived many lives starting off as a wine cellar, then a slaughterhouse, then eventually a restaurant. Started by a young couple, the restaurant really hit its stride once their daughter and grandson breathed new life into the business and revamped its dishes. With quinto quarto tasting menus, vegetarian options and a mean spaghetti carbonara, it’s worth stopping by here on the way to see Monte Testaccio.
Nearby Sites: Monte Testaccio
Jewish cuisine is a strong influence on many of Rome’s tastes and dishes and you’d be hard-pressed not to find Carciofi alla Giudia (artichokes cooked in the Jewish style) on menus in Rome. As the oldest joint in the Jewish quarter dating back to 1860, it’s no surprise that they specialise in the dish – so much so that they threw spring parties called Carciofolata there. Their homemade pastas are also a thing of beauty, try the taglioni.
Palazzo del Freddo di Giovanni Fassi
Skip dinner and head straight for dessert at Palazzo del Freddo, a gelato sanctuary started way back in 1880. Forget the mom and pop soda shops you’ll see in the US, gelato is serious business here with classy interiors and over 30 different gelato flavours ranging from safe vanillas and hazelnuts to bolder choices like rice and pineapple. Order an extra large scoop, grab a marble-topped table and be prepared to feast – the dessert’s next level here.