Posts Tagged ‘restaurants’

Best Pizzas in Rome

Kids love it. And you can never go wrong with pizza. Experts assert that the best pizzas are those crafted in the 200° dome cupolas of wood-fired ovens, employing well-leavened dough made with top quality ingredients and possibly water hailing from Naples. But that may be asking too much, especially if you’re not planning to visit Napoli with the toddlers in tow. Some of the best pizzas on the planet are indeed baked in the city of Naples, but a close match for equally tasty pies can be found in Rome. Where? Here is a list of child-friendly places for some of the best pizzas in Rome.

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One of the city’s best places to find excellent Napoli-style pizzas is pizzeria La Gatta Mangiona, in Monteverde, where the dough for the base is made with organic flous, natural starters and left to rise a minimum of 72 hours. This makes them light on the digestive system and tasty on the lips. La Gatta Mangiona is known for its gourmet pies, like the bizarre yet very tasty “fumo verde” added with smoked bufala, sauteed zucchini and smoked speck; or the Scottish, made with potatoes, Scottish salmon, pistachios and scallion; or the unique “Gallurese,” topped with tomato, Fiordilatte cheese, spicy pepperoni, Greek olives and aged Pecorino. ~ Via Federico Ozanam, 30 – Tel. +39 06 5346702

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Same goes for co-owned pizzeria Sforno in the Tuscolano neighborhood, whose gourmet pie listing includes a “Cacio e Pepe pizza” which like the pasta dish is topped with pecorino a cracked black pepper; there’s also the “Greenwich pizza” that comes topped with Blue Stilton cheese and a sweet Port wine reduction. Grownups may enjoy the “Testarossa” made with soppressata (sausage made primarily from leftover pork cuttings–cartilage, snippets of meat, and so on), mozzarella flavored with Campari and potatoes; or the pizza “Iblea” that comes garnished with sweet bell peppers, and aged Sicilian Ragusano cheese. ~ Via Statilio Ottato, 114 – Tel. +39 06 71546118

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Another great expression of traditional Neapolitan pizza-making in Rome can be experienced at pizzeria Tonda, in Montesacro. The dome shaped and wood-fired oven is hand crafted by master pizza oven-maker Stefano Ferrara, a name whose fame has traveled across borders. ~ Via Valle Corteno 31 – Tel. +39 06 8180960

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The name is a guarantee in itself: 96 hours. This is how long the pizza dough is left to rise after careful kneading and before a quick pop in a wood-fired oven. Top quality ingredients and toppings make pizzeria 96 Ore near the Vatican and Castel Sant’Angelo, a go-to for well loved Napoli-style pies. Pre-dinner musts include fried veggies, rice balls, croquettes, stuffed olives, zucchini blossoms, which come served in a paper cone called “cuoppo” of which kids are huge fans. ~ Via della Giuliana 31 – Tel. +39 06 39726218

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In the Parioli neighborhood, great pizzas can be found in the child-friendly pizzeria La Pariolina, where patrons are welcomed by heaps of homemade chips and coloring books, before orders are placed. Besides the excellent pizzas, the menu offers delicious daily specials, pasta dishes, meat and poultry (don’t miss the grilled chicken steak!) and assorted delicacies, like burrata with semi-dried tomatoes, cod and potato croquettes and all manner of craft beers and natural wines for mom and dad. ~ Viale dei Parioli, 93 – Tel. +39 06 8086002

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Looking for a place that serves quick pizzas at lunch, on your way to visiting the Explora Museum, the mighty Colosseum, or catching an animated movie at Cinema dei Piccoli? Here’s a place for you. No seating here, you nudge your way to the front of the counter and are dazzled with the variety of choices, to be eaten at small shelves, or outside, leaning on someone’s vespa. Gianni and his well-oiled team of bakers shell out pinsa (an oval shaped medium sized pizza) with expert timing to satisfy the long snaking line that crowds lunch hour at pizzeria Pinsere, near Termini. Toppings vary according to season, but there’s always a wide selection of vegetarian options, soups in winter and all manner of salads, couscous and pasta salads year round. ~ Via Flavia 98 – Tel. +39 06 42020924

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If you still don’t know about Trapizzini you might want to remedy that, asap. Head over to pizzeria 00100 in Testaccio, or the newly opened branch in Ponte Milvio and prepare for family ecstasy. Trapizzini are triangular pockets of baked pizza dough, which come stuffed with cucina Romana specialties, like braised oxtail, meatballs with tomato sauce, chicken cacciatore or with bell peppers, cuttlefish & peas, “picchiapò” (boiled meat which is slowly braised with herbs and tomato), or even tripe, tongue with green sauce, “garofolato” (meat sauce with cloves), “coratella” (lamb offal) with artichokes. There’s also pizzas sold by the slice, and a handsome selection of gourmet supplì (fried rice balls), my 8 year-old and I personally favor the ‘Frascati and Porchetta,’ or the saffron ones studded with prawns, mint and butternut squash, or the wildly tasty Amatriciana supplì. A definite must. ~ Via Giovanni Branca 88 – Tel +39 06 43419624 || Trapizzino ~ Piazza Ponte Milvio, 13 – Tel. +39 06 33221964

Photos courtesy of Cibando.com

Best child-friendly food in Rome

Looking for child-friendly foods, fun restaurants, and affordable prices in Rome where eyebrows will never rise when you walk in with the kids? Let’s start with these few:

RESTAURANTS
Hostaria Buccilli This is a typical trattoria in a countryside setting, located in the Northern suburbs of Rome. The food is homey and the welcoming family ambiance do the rest. But Buccilli’s kiddy plus is the spacious garden, where soccer and scampering are strongly encouraged while parents enjoy their lunch under the shady pergola or the sunlit veranda. In the colder months, book a table in the smaller room by the huge fireplace barbecue. Plenty of high chairs, pillows and friendly waiters. Luigi speaks fluent English and French.
Via dei Due Ponti, 48 | Tel. +39 06 334 0048 | Closed Monday

Agustarello Test your kids’ foodie courage (and yours too) by at least once during your stay in Rome, trying the city’s typical offal cuisine, known here as the fifth quarter, or all those dishes that employ the leftover parts of grazing animals (tripe, sweetbreads, lungs, nerves, tail, intestines, liver, etc.). Steps away from the old Roman slaughterhouse, Agustarello is one of Testaccio’s consistently reliable dining establishments: honest, informal, down to earth and affordable. The food? Homemade and hearty. Coda alla vaccinara (stewed oxtail), Trippa (tripe), Animelle (sweetbreads), Nervetti (a “salad” made with nerves and other meat cuttings), Fagioli con le Cotiche (beans and pork cracklings), Pajata (a traditional dish made with suckling lamb’s intestines. There are of course other non-organ items on the menu, plus the usual homemade desserts like caramel custard or the awesome Crostata di Visciole. In summer, kids can play tag in the spacious concrete back yard.
Via Giovanni Branca, 98/100 | Tel. +39 06 5746585 | Closed on Sunday and Monday at lunch

Lucia |Typical family-run osteria in the heart of the lovely Trastevere neighborhood where kids are welcome to roam around the tables and are treated like royalty by the friendly staff. The food is homemade, local, traditional and very healthy, no junk food or children’s menu. The sauce is made from garden tomatoes, the meat carefully selected at the market that same morning, the vegetables jump at you with freshness. Kids love it here, because between mouthfuls they can stare at newspaper clippings, kinck knacks, family pictures, and lots of ancient kitchen implements hung on the walls. Leave room for dessert and don’t miss Lucia’s homemade tiramisu or the panna cotta with fresh fruit toppings.
Vicolo del Mattonato, 2b | Tel. +39 06 580 3601 | Closed Monday.

Molto There’s plenty of stroller space in this quiet Parioli restaurant featuring seafood and pasta dishes you can enjoy on a garden-enclosed wooden deck. Kids under six get a discount on the impressive all-you-can-eat Sunday “brunch” buffet spread, priced at €20 instead of €35, which is a full-fledged Italian lunch, so you won’t find pancakes and waffles.
Viale Parioli, 122 | Tel. +39 06 808 2900 | Open daily

Cul de Sac | Long and narrow like a train caboose and serving small tasty portions and sampler platters, this famous wine bar with outside seating in summer, accommodates even the fussiest mini-gourmands. You can’t go wrong with a ball of mozzarella and thinly sliced prosciutto, or the many creative vegetable dishes, hearty soups or commendable house babaghanoush. Meanwhile, grown-ups can sip well-deserved glasses of local Lazio wines.
Piazza Pasquino, 73 | Tel. 06 68801094 | Open daily, lunch and dinner

PIZZA
Forno Campo de’ Fiori The pizza bianca sold by weight at the Forno Campo de Fiori is among the best in town, and all of the breads and pastries sold here are excellent too. Small children are always given a complimentary slice of pizza to chew on as soon as parents walk through the door to make the wait in line tastier. Customers can watch the bakers in action through big glass windows, and then browse the market, or sit on the marble rim of a fountain or a bench and take in all the colors, aromas and sounds. The Forno’s second location next door sells sandwiches already made for takeaway, excellent place for picnic-shopping.
Piazza Campo de’ Fiori, 22 | Tel. +39 06 6880 6662 | Open daily 7.30 am – 2.30 pm; 4.45 pm – 8 pm

Trapizzino Ponte Milvio | Kids will love tucking into a Trapizzino! Thse are perfect pockets of focaccia stuffed with typical Roman fare, so expect meatballs in tomato sauce, but also tripe, tongue, sweetbreads and other delectable offal dishes in a portable serving. Children can equally enjoy their triangles of happiness filled with Sicilian broccoli and grilled sausage, braised beef cheek, Mesculun salad or vignarola, octopus and tomato sauce. There are two branches, one in Testaccio (in the same block as Agustarello) and one with outdoor seating, in Ponte Milvio, which is near the Foro Italico sports complex, Auditorium, Axel ice skating rink and the soccer stadium.
Piazza Ponte Milvio, 13 | Tel. +39 06 4341 9624 | Open daily 11 am to 2 am

Remo | This informal pizzeria is a perfect place for kids, they are always welcome and the Roman style pizzas (that is thin crust and very little topping) will be a huge success with the little ones. As a starter, ask for the house bruschetta with fresh tomatoes or cannellini beans, or some of the best fried zucchini flowers and battered cod fillets you’ve ever had. Save room for dessert: the tart filled with ricotta and visciole (wild, sour cherries) is unique.
Piazza di Santa Maria Liberatrice 44 | Tel. +39 06 574 6270 | Open Mon-Sat 6.00 pm-1.00 am

Image © Roma Every Day

GELATO
Gelateria del Teatro | Located on beautiful Via dei Coronari, this wonderful gelateria has recently expanded and doubled its offer (there’s a second branch on Lungotevere, near Via Arenula) but the quality of its fabulous gelatos remains unaltered. Only high quality ingredients are used here. I walked into the middle of an argument once between one of the owners and a peach supplier. The fruit was not top choice apparently, and the gelato artisan simply refused to buy. “No peach ice cream today, sorry,” he roared, as the disgruntled farmer walked out the door. Apart from the hallmark pure chocolates and standard flavors, the house winter flavor combos include Langhe hazelnut, organic fig and cheese, Bronte pistachio, dark chocolate and Nero d’Avola, honey and gorgonzola. While the summer flavors shine in the delightful spumante and wild strawberry, white peach and garden sage, raspberry and lavender, and the latest: mint stracciatella, and the unusual white chocolate and fresh basil.
Via dei Coronari 65 | Tel. +39 06 4547 4880 | Open daily

©EleonoraBaldwin

©EleonoraBaldwin

Fatamorgana | Dark chocolate-wasabi gelato is only one of the mouth-watering flavors packed in the non-ending display case. Fatamorgana’s dedication to producing ice cream from scratch using exclusively fresh, seasonal ingredients and gluten-free products enhances the quality of its bold flavors, like the bizarre gorgonzola and pears, or confections inspired by Sardinian seadas (fried pastries filled with halloumi-type cheese, then drizzled with chestnut honey); almond-cardamom, white chocolate, poppy seed, and pine nuts.
Via Lago di Lesina, 9 | Via Ostiense, 36E | Via G. Bettolo, 7

Pascucci Frullati | Despite the 75 birthday candles, at Pascucci – Roman milkshake shrine par excellence – the blenders of the newly remodeled shop still pour gallons of refreshing combos, like ones made with tropical fruits and organic milk from grass-fed cows: walnut and avocado special, or the Amalfi, a chilled delight made with, among other fresh ingredients, local Amalfi organic lemons. Classic seasonal smoothies include blueberry, banana, strawberry, cantaloupe melon and peach.
Piazza degli Zingari, 5 | Tel. +3906 4890 6955 | other branches: Via di Torre Argentina, 20 | Tel. +39 06 686 4816 | Open 6.00 am to midnight, except on Sunday.

Pica | Alfredo Pica – Signor Gelato himself – according to many, makes Rome’s best. Among the old-fashioned constants, shining brightly is a noteworthy pistachio, and – a Pica original – riso alla cannella, which is a frozen, crunchy, cinnamon-laced rice pudding. All the sorbets are made from nothing but fruit and sugar. On any given day, small batches of unusual flavors can include fragrant, bright-pink rosa, made from candied rose petals; egg-based custard with fragoline di bosco, tiny wild strawberries; and the indescribable manna, a heavenly sweet tree resin of biblical fame. There is a spacious outdoor veranda with tables and benches.
Via Della Seggiola, 12 | Tel. +39 06 686 8405 | Open daily

©EleonoraBaldwin

©EleonoraBaldwin

My son and I are loyal to Oxilia, (in Via Nino Oxilia, 8–Parioli) our neighborhood gelato pusher, an Argentine gentleman who will pass us vats of bootleg Dulce de Leche under the counter, or phone me (PHONE me, I said) when the fresh melon cremolato is ready to be scooped on wafer cones…

Click to read an article I wrote on more child-friendly restaurants.

Rome City Guide for Kids: a local mommy’s tips

Vacation with kids in a foreign country spells ‘horror’ to you?

Can’t see the fun in traveling with tots in the Eternal City?

Scared of touring major sites with infants?

Expat families living in Rome looking for help?

Look no further. The new insider’s Rome City Guide for Kids is here!
Welcome! Here you will find all the information, tips and ideas to get you around Rome stress-free with children ages 0 to 12.

Image © Roma Every Day

This site provides all the necessary tools for a fun, educating and enjoyable stay in Rome for the entire family. Categories include: indexed lists of city museums, restaurants and playgrounds; babysitter services, medical support, recommended English-speaking pediatricians, emergency hospitals and pharmacies open at night; music, cinema and theater for children; bookstores, zoos and sports facilities; bike rentals, libraries, party venues and more!! Plus, featured articles, destination pieces, original ideas, tips, tricks and trivia to get you and your children around town like a true Roman.

All you and your children need in the Eternal City is now just a mouse-click away.

Benvenuti!

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