If you want to taste in the district of Trastevere something more Roman than the Capitoline wolf, but you are afraid that the fame of this bohemian and charming neighborhood has gone to his head, take note of some gastronomic suggestions to make your foodie visit to this suburb a success.
Of course, if you will allow me to give you a fundamental piece of advice, applicable to almost all my culinary proposals: book a table! This golden rule should be taken into account by all travelers who want to fill their stomachs in Trastevere, the most genuine neighborhood of the Italian capital. He who warns, is not a traitor.
1. Feel like a real Italian at Trattoria Da Augusto
If you are one of those who enjoy the neighborhood restaurants, the typical Paco bar or the food houses where they serve homemade dishes, you will love this Roman trattoria. Located in the heart of Trastevere, the Trattoria Da Augusto will make you travel through the senses to the past. Here the technology has not reached them, but they don't need it because the dishes are quite good.
It is a small restaurant that is usually crowded with Italians and serves homemade food at a very affordable price. You will feel like the protagonist of the series "Cuéntame", Antonio Alcantará, but in Italian version. Before traveling to Rome, you should know that "trattorias" are family-run restaurants that serve the menu of the day at a very affordable price.
Attention! In this restaurant credit cards are not accepted, so bring cash if you do not want to be left to wash the dishes. As for the atmosphere, it is common to share a table with other diners and you will probably be amazed because they will give you the bill directly on the paper tablecloth. That's what it means to make good use of the raw material!
Practical information about Trattoria Da Augusto
- Where: Piazza de' Renzi, Nº15.
- Average price: between 8 and 10€ approximately per dish.
- Hours: from 12:30 to 15h for lunch and from 20 to 23h for dinner.
- Chef's tip: the meat of this place is very famous, one of the specialties of the house.
- Recommended if... you want a cheap restaurant and you do not have great pretensions.
2. The best pizza in Trastevere, at Pizzeria Ivo
Did you know that pizza arrived in Rome after World War II through immigrants from the south of the country? So if you thought, as I did, that Romans were born with a pizza under their arm, you are very confused. However, in less than a century it has already become the signature dish. Although it is difficult to choose the best pizza in Rome, in my case, I choose the one from Pizzeria Ivo. It's finger-licking good!
The pastry shop converted into a pizzeria
This place has been delighting the inhabitants of Rome and tourists for more than 60 years. Specifically, it was in the early 1960s when its founder, Ivo Stefanelli, set up his own business in Trastevere, first focusing on desserts and then pizzas, and thanks to word of mouth it became the trendy place in the area.
High quality pizzas at a good price
Today, his son Ivano has taken the reins of the pizzeria and has begun to improve the selection of raw materials: introducing Danish meats, cheeses and cured meats from leading brands, organic labels and craft beers. The good thing? The average price of 20 € has not changed. Good, nice and cheap.
Practical information about Pizzeria Ivo
- Where: Via di S. Francesco a Ripa, No. 158.
- Average price: 10 euros a pizza.
- Hours: Serves mainly dinners, from 6 pm to 0:30 am, except on Sundays when it is also open from 12 pm to 3 pm.
- Chef's tip: try the fiori di zucca (zucchini flowers stuffed with cheese and anchovy paste) and the tiramisu.
- Recommended if... you want to eat the best pizza and you are not in a hurry (sometimes the waiters are a bit slow).
3. The best pasta, at the best price at Da Enzo al 29
Despite the long queues that form (logical and normal, on the other hand) it is worth waiting to enter the restaurant Da Enzo al 29 and try one of the best pastas in Trastevere. I can only say that the carbonara dish was spectacular, so much so that I repeated the following days. It would be a sin to come to Rome and not dine here - be careful because they don't take reservations!
But who is the owner? You will have to look for him, as if he were Wally, on one of the walls of the dining room, where you will find a photo with his portrait hanging in the trattoria. He passed away at the end of the 80's, but Enzo's presence is still very much felt: he is in the memory of the customers who frequented the restaurant when he himself ran it.
Practical information about the trattoria Da Enzo al 29
- Where: Via dei Vascellari, No. 29.
- Average price: 13 € for a pasta dish.
- Hours: Monday to Saturday from 12:15 to 3 pm and from 7 to 11 pm.
- Chef's tip: try any of their pastas, they are all delicious!
- Recommended if... you want an authentic Roman meal in a place that keeps the essence of Rome.
4. The best spaghetti at Tonnarello Restaurant
Are you one of those who let yourself be advised or one of those who go crazy to restaurants? In my case, I'm of the first group, I don't decide until I read a thousand positive reviews. A good example of this was my visit to the Tonnarello restaurant, which had more than 35,000 reviews and most of them were outstanding. I thought: everyone can't be wrong, right? So I took the plunge and my experience was brutal.
A fantastic terrace ideal for the summer in Rome, a charming place and the hallmark of the house: delicious tonnarelli (a kind of spaghetti), handmade as the Italian nonas. Carnivores, meanwhile, can get their fill of lamb, oxtail and meatballs. Every ingredient here is carefully selected, as is the presentation.
Practical information about Tonnarello Restaurant
- Where: Via della Paglia, 1-2-3
- Average price: €9 for a pasta dish and from €14 for main courses.
- Hours: 10:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m.
- Chef's tip: the tonarello Cacio e Pepe, rated the best in Rome.
- Recommended if... you want to go to a charming restaurant and eat well for sure.
5. The best pasta with seafood at a good price at Osteria Der Belli
If you want to treat yourself to a good value culinary treat and feel like another Roman, I suggest you go to Osteria Der Belli, a Sardinian restaurant that specializes in simple seafood dishes such as octopus with baked potatoes; sea bass carpaccio and grilled squid. All at a great price!
It is a very family restaurant where everyone participates: the owner's sisters prepare their delicious fresh pasta with seafood every day. They also have tasty options for vegetarians, such as pasta with mushroom sauce or ravioli with spinach and ricotta cheese. In summer, it is best to try their menu on their lively outdoor terrace.
Practical information about Osteria Der Belli restaurant
- Where: Piazza di Sant'Apollonia, 11.
- Average price: between 10€ and 16€ each dish.
- Hours: 12:30 to 3:00 pm for lunch and 7:00 to 11:30 pm for dinner.
- Chef's suggestions: the mussels, the bruschetta al pomodoro and the pasta with spigola (sea bass).
- Recommended if... you want to taste seafood in all its forms at a good price.
6. Enjoy the most original pizza in Your pizza Illuminati
If you are tired of the typical Italian pizza with thin crust (although it is impossible to get bored) and want to try something different, I advise you to book a table at Tu pizza Illuminati, a local minimalist style that moves away from the clichés and folklore of traditional pizzerias.
Here the pizzas are a mix between a calzone and a crepe with thick but very juicy edges that will delight you. One of the characteristics of the restaurant is that the menu varies according to the season and they also have wonderful sweet pizzas (worth a visit) and fried pizzas, which are sublime. The prices are a little higher than other places but not exaggerated and in line with the proposal.
Practical information about Tu pizza Illuminati
- Where: Via Angelo Bargoni, 10-18.
- Average price: between 10€ and 15€ each pizza.
- Hours: from 7:00 p.m. to midnight every night (Mondays off).
- Chef's tip: the classic pizzas are infallible, such as margherita, marinara and cosaco, among others.
- Recommended if... you want to try a minimalist pizza and its sweeter version.
7. The best appetizer at Cantina dei Papi Ham Shop
To live the full experience in Rome, you must try the typical appetizer of Rome, which has become a ritual. It is a kind of fun afterwork that is usually held every day around 6 p.m. and is as traditional as the vermouth on Sundays in Spain.
In this case, you pay a fixed price for the drink and it includes a sophisticated appetizer. Do you want a break from pasta and try this delight? I recommend you go to the Cantina dei Papi ham store, which stands out for its tables with an exquisite selection of cold meats and cheeses from the area.
They can be taken accompanied by a good wine and in a cozy and intimate atmosphere. If you want to drink water, they serve it for free in a pitcher, which is appreciated.
Order a Mixed Platter
My suggestion is to order a mixed board where you will be served ham, bacon, wild boar sausage, pork loin, pork lard and other Italian gourmet products on rustic wood. You will also be able to taste various cheese specialties, such as those flavored with truffles and pistachio and walnuts. There are also bruschettas (a kind of Italian toast) with various sauces and pates such as olives, artichokes, truffles... They are to die for!
Practical information of Prosciutteria Cantina dei Papi
- Where: Via della Scala, No. 71.
- Average price: 5€ -10€.
- Hours: every day from 11:30 am to 11:30 pm.
- Chef's tip: try the boards and sandwiches, based on high quality artisan hams and cheeses.
- Recommended if... you want a snack dinner in an informal and youthful atmosphere with a very friendly and helpful staff.
8. The best and healthiest ice cream you will eat at Fiordiluna
Why did Audrey Hepburn fall in love with Rome, the scenery, the pizzas, the Italians? We don't know, but what is clear is that one of the reasons was its exquisite handmade ice creams, considered the best in the world. In particular, I prefer Fiordiluna 's because of their way of pampering the product: they only use fresh fruit!
For more than 25 years this place has been preparing ice creams with top quality ingredients that they buy from small producers: from hazelnuts to cocoa. And you can tell when you taste them. If you are on a diet, don't worry, because they have also developed ice creams without added sugars, with an incredible flavor and creaminess. You are already late to try them!
Discover the neighborhoods of Rome through its ice creams
If you have a sweet tooth and are curious about where to find the most spectacular ice creams in the Eternal City, here is a guide to the best ice creams in Rome. You will become an expert!
Practical information about Fiordiluna
- Where: Via della Lungaretta, 96.
- Chef's tip: the pistachio gelato is delicious.
- Recommended if... you want to try the most authentic gelato in Trastevere.
9. Taste the best street food at Trapizzino Trilussa
The most modern and street food lovers can enjoy good street food at Trapizzino Trilussa, which has developed a kind of tapas, somewhere between a sandwich and a pizza, that you can order to take away and eat in the square.
Specifically, it is a triangular-shaped slice of pizza, rolled up and open in the middle filled with typical and delicious dishes of Roman gastronomy. Today, the idea has become so popular that it has already opened several franchises in Italy and even in... New York!
Traditional recipes wrapped in a pizza
Founder Stefano Calligari has a notebook where he writes down his mother's and aunts' traditional recipes such as cuttlefish with peas, chicken with peppers... which he then introduces in his closed pizzas. The chef has given a twist to the matter with this fun way of tasting them: without staining cutlery and with the possibility of enjoying the trapizzinos in the street, in any corner of Italy.
Practical information about Trapizzino Trilussa
- Where: Piazza Trilussa, 46.
- Average price: 4 € a trapizzino.
- Hours: every day from 12 noon to 1 am. Fridays and Saturdays until 2am.
- Chef's suggestion: polpetta al sugo, zighini, chicken alla cacciatora**...**
- Recommended if... you want to try signature food at a good price and you don't want to waste a lot of time on it.
10. Try the best slushy at Sora Mirella overlooking the river
In summer the best way to combat the high temperatures in Rome is to have a good grattachecca (a Roman invention similar to slushies to cool down). I suggest you go to Sora Mirella, a charming little outdoor kiosk by the Tiber River and order one of these milkshakes - the views are spectacular!
It is also one of the few places where grattachecca is prepared the traditional way: that is, by scraping a block of ice with a tool, rather than with a modern machine. On top of your grattachecca you will get delicious fresh fruit and you can even order it with alcohol. Watching the sunset with this drink sounds good, doesn't it?
Practical information about Sora Mirella
- Where: Lungotevere Degli Anguillara.
- Average price: very cheap.
- Hours: every day from 9:00 am to 1:30 am.
- Recommended if... you want to enjoy a delicious dessert outdoors with a nice view of the river and the bridge.
How much money do I need to eat in Trastevere?
Probably one of our biggest worries when we go on a trip is calculating how much money we need. However, in this neighborhood of Rome, as you have seen, there are options for all budgets and some with which you will barely scratch your pocket.
A good example of this are the tapas you can order to go at the restaurant Trapizzino Trilussa, each for about 4 €. If you want to eat cheap but seated, I recommend you also try the family trattorias that offer the dish of the day at a good price.
On the other hand, if you are looking for something more sophisticated and modern this district is at the forefront of the sector, so you will find numerous options to please your palate without dying broke in the attempt.
How tipping works in restaurants in Rome
The million dollar question: do you have to leave a tip? You can breathe easy... In Italy, tipping is not obligatory and it is not very common. You don't have to leave a percentage of the bill as in other European countries.
You can, however, leave some money voluntarily as a token of your appreciation if you liked the service and the food, which you will probably love! In restaurants you usually pay for the service, a fixed value per person that can vary depending on the restaurant from 1 to 4€. And now, bon appetit!