Eating Your Way Through Rome
A perfect day in Rome for the ultimate foodie.
When most people think of a trip to Italy, one of the first things that come to mind is the food. Well…rightfully so. Before my trip to Rome I was of course excited for the pizza, pasta and wine but I was more excited to see the sights and explore the city. Well, once I arrived, this plan quickly changed. My friends and I would live meal-to-meal, finishing one and then excitedly planning for the next. After a few days, we knew all of our favorite dishes as well as all of our favorite places. So, due to my love of food and self-proclaimed expertise in this area, here is my guide to eating your way through Rome in just one day.
Breakfast: 9:30 a.m.
The streets of Rome are flooded with cafes and bakeries on every corner, so it’s not hard to find the perfect breakfast nook before a day of exploring. Breakfast will usually consist of some type of delicious pastry and a cappuccino or espresso. My favorite pastry would be a freshly baked, flakey scone stuffed with warm Nutella or custard cream, YUM. I would always accompany this with a cappuccino. The first time I ordered one I was skeptical. As a dedicated and obsessed coffee drinking I doubted that the small cup of coffee in front of me would give me enough energy to last the whole day. But luckily, I was proven wrong. So don’t be fooled; those little suckers are packed with caffeine and, not to mention, delicious!
Lunch: 12:15 p.m.
By now you’ve probably burned off that whole pastry with all the walking you’ve done. So it’s the perfect time for lunch, and lunch means pizza. And not crappy take-out pizza, I’m talking fresh, authentic, Italian pizza; crispy crust and a thin layer of sauce topped with quality cheese and toppings of your choice. My lunch spot recommendation is Dar Poeta, a true Italian pizza restaurant located in the backstreets of the Trastevere neighborhood. Gather your friends, order a few pitchers of wine and a selection of their delicious signature pizzas. They are perfect for sharing, giving you the opportunity to try every mouthwatering combination.
Aperitivo: 6 p.m.
In Rome, and pretty much everywhere else in Europe, dinner is served much later than in America, usually around 9 p.m. Most Italians enjoy aperitivo as a way to hold themself over between lunch and dinner. Aperitivo is pretty much the Italian version of happy hour (just minus the discounts and specials). It is more of an opportunity to unwind after work and reignite your appetite for dinner. Aperitivo and is offered at many wine bars and restaurants around Rome, so its not difficult to find a spot. The small meal usually consist of a glass of wine and then a small platter of various snacks like meats and cheese, olives and bruschetta.
Dinner: 9 p.m.
Dinner, in my opinion, is the best meal of the day, and Italy certainly did not disappoint. My suggestion for dinner is to wander the streets in a popular neighborhood and look at a few menus before deciding. Once you choose a cozy spot, order yourself a glass of Prosecco and maybe a few appetizers to start. Nothing beats a caprese salad with ripe tomatoes, and fresh chucks of mozzarella cheese to get your meal started. Then onto your entrée, it wouldn’t be a true day in Rome if you didn’t eat pasta at least once, right? Right. I would alter every night between the two most popular options: Pasta Carbonara and Cacio e pepe. Pasta Carbonara is usually spaghetti or linguine with oil, egg and bacon bits in the sauce. Cacio e Pepe featured a think noodle and a creamy, cheesy sauce with a strong kick of pepper. You really can’t go wrong with either option
Gelato: 11 p.m.
If you’re not totally full by now it’s the perfect time for gelato. I had gelato everyday in Rome (no shame) and there was one particular place where the gelato was the creamiest and most delicious. This place was Gelateria La Romana. They have a huge selection of fresh, house made flavors and they topped off every scoop with a generous dollop of cream, what could be better? So bottom line, if you’re close to Gelateria La Romana, go there. If you’re not close, still go there.
Now you can go to sleep with a happy belly and sweet dreams of what food tomorrow brings.