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When In Rome: 20 Restaurants Everyone Needs To Eat At

Rome, the Eternal City, has offered a lot over its 3,000-year history. This city has literally shaped the history of the world more than any other city. And one thing that Italy, and Rome in particular, is known for is its cuisine. Whether you are looking for pizza, pasta, pastries, or anything else, Rome is sure to have a meal that will suit your needs.

This list of 20 dining spots in Rome will help you to live like the Romans do. These restaurants and bistros are serving up a lot more than just great food. They are serving the experience of Rome in a single meal. From breakfast to dinner, and all meals in between, the 20 dining places on this list cover the gambit of Roman cuisine.

As you look through this list, be sure to take note of the atmosphere that each provides, as well as a description of the dishes and foods that make each place unique. If you are planning a trip to Rome anytime in the near future, take note of the best places and plan to visit a few, or all, of them as time permits.

When in Rome, eat as the Romans do!

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20 Pizzarium

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Located near the Vatican museums, Pizzarium may just be the best pizza in Rome. With a menu that changes daily, Pizzarium serves pizza by the slice on an heirloom wheat crust. And if that is not enough to get you salivating, the artisanal cheese and meats, things like slow-roasted pork, and octopus make for a great pizza. If you are going to be in Rome and you like pizza, then be sure to stop by Pizzarium for pizza so fresh and unique that you will want to go back the next day for something different. There is no table service, however, so you will probably end up walking down the street while you enjoy your slice of heaven.

19 Armondo Al Pantheon

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Armondo al Pantheon has been serving authentic Roman cuisine since 1961. Meals here start with starters such as bruschetta or cold cuts. This is followed with such things as spaghetti with cheese and pepper or spaghetti carbonara. For those looking for a delicious fish meal, the tagliolini with cod baccala is a typical cod stew. The second course may be boiled beef or duck with prunes, followed by a dessert of chocolate mousse or Roman cookies. Overall, there are nearly 50 menu items to choose from to build your own unique but authentic Roman meal at Armondo al Pantheon.

18 Pasticerria Regoli

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For those with a sweet tooth, head over to Pasticerria Regoli, which has been around for over 100 years, baking up some of Rome's finest baked goods. Located near Santa Maria Maggiore and Piazza Vittorio Emanuele II, this artisanal pastry shop specializes in everything from baked breakfast pastries to fine desserts. They bake everything from tarts to tortes to cakes to cookies and everything else imaginable, following tried and true Roman pastry recipes that have been in the family since 1916. Even if you are not looking for something sweet, a visit to Pasticerria Regoli is worth looking at the fine artistry that goes into the design of their pastries. And they may just convince you to buy something to go.

17 Pastificio

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What kind of a meal do you think you could get for 4 Euros? At Pastificio, that will buy you a plate of pasta (either meat or vegetarian) and a glass of water or wine. The menu changes daily, and with limited seating space, this popular stop in Rome should be hit up right when they open at 1:30 pm. But they will be there until 9:30, so you have plenty of time to stop in and grab a great plate of pasta for just 4 Euros. Pastificio perfected the "grab and go" nature of the American food truck long ago, and their popularity among Romans and tourists shows just how great of a place it is.

16 Mordi E Vai

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A great place to grab a great sandwich on the go is Mordi e Vai. In fact, they were selected as the Regional Champion of street food in 2013, but they have been serving up fresh baked bread for their sandwiches with Scottana meats for a lot longer than that. Mordi e Vai is a popular on the go lunch in Rome, and their sandwiches and artisan bread practically speak for themselves. As you stroll the streets of Rome, take lunch with you and grab a great sandwich from Mordi e Vai in the middle of the day to keep you going for the rest of your day living like a Roman.

15 Marzapane

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Marzapan is upscale Italian cuisine at its finest. They focus on sourcing their food and wine from small producers, which gives a "farm to table" experience that so many people are looking for in their dining experience. Rather than just serve you food that tastes good, the staff at Marzapane aim to create an entire sensory experience that fully engages you as you dine. While all of the food here is outstanding, you can really tell the effort that is put into it as he tasting menu is something that is recommended by tourists and locals alike. Marzapane really does offer an experience with your Italian meal.

14 Coromandel

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Looking for brunch in Rome? Look no further than Coromandel, which offers arguably the best and most robust brunch available in the city. But, even if brunch is not your thing, Coromandel offers a variety of topnotch meal options throughout the day. With a focus on a friendly atmosphere that is like dining with family, you are sure to enjoy the experience dining here just as much as you enjoy the food. Relatively centrally located near a variety of tourist spots, Coromandel could be where you stop for all of your meals throughout the day, as they have something unique to offer at all hours of the day.

13 Il Goccetto

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Il Goccetto is a great wine bar with a rotating menu of up to 30 wines available by the glass. To go with your wine, they offer a small selection of cold plates, such as salads and meats. But they really stand out for their selection of wines, a favorite place for locals and tourists to gather and relax while sampling wine from a variety of regions. While wine bars are gaining quite a bit of popularity around the world, Il Goccetto really has it down to an art with their cozy atmosphere and selection of wines available for sampling and drinking each day.

12 Salumeria Roscioli

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The first thing you are going to think about when you go into Salumeria Roscioli is that it is a meat shop. But this is actually a deli that offers cheese and cured meat plates and so much more. While the menu focuses on the cheeses and cured meats, be sure to try out the pasta and other dishes that one would not expect to find in a place with whole hams sitting right inside the door. Salumeria Roscioli is a very unique restaurant in the fact that it offers such high-quality meats and cheeses, but that is to be expected from a family-owned deli that also serves pasta dishes.

11 Emma Pizzeria Con Cucina

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Emma Pizzeria Con Cucina offers great pizza and so much more. Your meal starts off with fried starters that are probably unlike anything else you have ever tasted. From there, your culinary adventure moves on to the main dishes, mostly excellent pizza pies, that are carefully crafted from foods sourced from Salumeria Roscioli (see above). Regardless of what you are in the mood for, you are sure to find something that meets your needs on the menu at Emma Pizzeria Con Cucina. With over a couple dozen pizza selections, along with appetizers, an extensive wine list, and a breathtaking dessert menu, this is one pizza place that sets the bar for others.

10 Altrove Ristorante

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Altrove Ristorante serves an update to traditional Italian cuisine. This grand little restaurant is located in the Ostiense Food District, making it very easy to find in Rome. The restaurant focuses on healthy eating options, as well as trying to provide food that meets the dietary needs of the patrons, whether those needs are health-based, ethnic, or religious-based, which is something you are not likely to find at just about any other restaurant. So, if you are looking for great Italian food that has been given a modern twist, take the opportunity to visit Altrove Ristorante at your first chance.

9 Boccione - Il Forno Del Ghetto

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Boccione - il Forno del Ghetto is literally a bakery in the Jewish Ghetto of Rome. That means that it is over 300 years old, and with that kind of a rich history, you know that the food they serve is going to be spectacular. This baker is Kosher and specializes in Roman and Jewish sweets. However, because they are a bakery, it is to be expected that they make great pizza. And they do, using an almond flour-based pizza dough, which provides for a unique but very satisfying pizza meal. Boccione - il Forno del Ghetto may trace its roots back over three centuries, but they are definitely a modern fixture in Roman cuisine.

8 Piatto Romano

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For a great authentic Italian meal, head over to Piatto Romano, which serves some of the best Roman and Italian food in Rome. From classic Italian dishes to their signature meat free options, just about anyone is going to be able to find a great meal at Piatto Romano. Serving Roman cuisine that they claim dates to Augustus, they have been in business for over forty years, and their passion for serving up great food to the masses, often via their catering, is readily apparent to even the most discerning connoisseur of Italian cuisine. The extensive menu virtually speaks for itself, but the food definitely speaks for the restaurant.

7 Osteria Chiana

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Osteria Chiana is serving a bistro-style feast of traditional Roman cuisine to eager diners from all over Rome. Whether they are tourists who have heard about the charming restaurant or regulars who have been eating here for years, they all agree that Osteria Chiana has the tastiest take on a number of Roman dishes. If you have never experienced true dining bliss from a restaurant that is barely bigger than the kitchen, then you have really missed out on what Osteria Chiana has to offer. With a full menu from antipasta to dessert, anyone will be able to find their old favorite or start a new tradition at Osteria Chiana.

6 La Gatta Mangiona

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La Gatta Mangiona serves up a twist on Italian and Roman cuisine. With an extensive beer list (something that is not all that common on the Italian restaurant scene) and a pizza of the month, guests at La Gatta Mangiona will be treated to a new dining experience each time they walk through the doors. And the daily specials offer up a nice treat for the diners that make the time to stop in each day, and there are quite a few people who will want to do just that after they have tried even one bite of the food at La Gatta Mangiona.

5 Assaggia Roma

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For a very unique twist on Roman cuisine, make sure to visit Assaggia Roma. They offer traditional Roman cuisine and dishes. However. they are served in a "tapas" style or "tasting" portion. For those familiar with this method of serving dishes, you will not be surprised that you need to order a number of dishes. The recipes at Assaggia Roma are based on old-world Italian cooking, and the dishes have six to nine portions meant to be shared. This gives guests the chance to try a number of great dishes, without filling up on just one. While far from traditional, it is a method that certainly suits the diners at Assaggia Roma.

4 Al Moro

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Al Moro is one of the most historical restaurants in Rome, serving both classic Italian dishes and a number of seasonal dishes, all of which are prepared fresh. And if you visit enough, you will begin to get a VIP treatment. Imagine the people that have come through the doors and sat at the tables of Al Moro and you will begin to get a sense of the importance it has played to a number of people and organizations throughout its storied history. Oh, and the food is great too. You cannot beat the combination of the atmosphere and the cuisine at Al Moro.

3 Metamorfosi

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While most of the cuisine in Rome is Italian or Roman in nature, Metamorfosi is serving up contemporary meals with a South American influence. The menu changes on a regular basis, so even if you have been here before, you may be in for a surprise the next time you stop in. Metamorfosi also offers a testing menu for those diners that want to try everything on the menu. The restaurant's staff want to make every meal an experience for the diners, and they start with the food. Each recipe is specifically designed to instill some sort of an experience in the diners rather than just provide them with food.

2 Antico Arco

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Antico Arco offers something more than just a great culinary experience. Sure, they are serving up contemporary Italian cuisine in an upscale restaurant, but that is hardly the reason why most people dine here. Antico Arco is located on Gianicolo, a hill offering the restaurant views of the rest of Rome. So as you sit back and dine on some of the finest food that Rome has to offer, you will be looking out at the roofs of Rome and thinking about all that has gone on in this great city over its 3,000-year history. So raise your glass and salute Antico Arco for doing what no other Roman restaurant can do.

1 Trattoria Monti

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Trattoria Monti is a restaurant in high demand in Rome. Inspired by Le Marche, the cuisine here features game and fresh pasta, not your typical at just any restaurant. Trattoria Monti may actually be the most sought-after restaurant in Rome for a number of reasons. Not only is the food fantastic, with traditional Italian dishes not seen elsewhere in Rome, but the atmosphere of Trattoria Monti offers something that many other restaurants, bakeries, and diners throughout Rome are unable to offer. If you are looking for the authentic 21st century Roman dining experience, be sure to make time for a reservation at Trattoria Monti.

Hopefully, this list has given you some ideas of places to dine in Rome. Whether you seek pastries or the finest pasta with an outstanding view, you are sure to find exactly what the Romans eat and how they enjoy eating it if you stick to this list of 20 great places to eat in Rome.

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