Listing the best restaurants in Trastevere, Rome can be quite challenging. Which one to choose? Is it true that wherever you go you will eat well?
Just like how you should watch out for pickpockets in the metro, travelers should watch out for touristy menus where food is either frozen or just poorly assembled. Trastevere is one of those Roman neighborhoods where food is taken seriously, so get ready for a five-senses experience!
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Start by getting lost. Trastevere is one of those neighborhoods where it’s actually fun to just wander around. From Piazza Trilussa, turn left or right without any specific criteria. Stop into a little boutique that grabs your attention, or take a picture of a bright pink plant as you walk by. Laundry waving like flags over the streets, Vespas parking here and there – could it get more Italian than that?
Just start eating and you will see that, yes, it gets even better.
La Renella in Via del Moro, 15, 00153 Roma is not actually specifically a restaurant, but it had to be put in the list of best restaurants in Trastevere. Here’s why:
Some people love the smell of fresh laundry, others adore the scent of a particular flower. But for everyone, there’s nothing like the warm and cozy aroma of freshly baked bread coming out of a wood oven to make the rest of the world disappear for a moment. Walking down the back street of La Renella is like wrapping a warm blanket around you or returning home.
Once inside, the friendly Roman owners will serve you anything on display. From a loaf of oven-baked bread – so good that is good even by itself – to one of the many kinds of pizza. Typical cookies and pies are always there tempting you. Just accept the fact that you might gain a couple of kilos while here – and you’ll enjoy every minute of it!
Taverna Trilussa is in Via del Politeama, 23/25, 00153 Roma. As you walk in, you are welcomed by quotes of Roman poets written on the wall (our locals can help you with translations!). Make sure you reserve a table, as it tends to get full pretty easily. During the warm and hot months, you might even ask for a table outside. Eating with the natural sounds of the Roman nightlife might make your food taste even better.
Start with the typical antipasti on the menu. You have to try the fiori di zucca, fried zucchini flowers filled with melted mozzarella cheese and anchovies. Hand sliced ham with fried artichokes are also an excellent choice.
For the first course, make sure each of you get a different one so you can all try as many as possible! Enjoy the taste of the authentic Roman cuisine served directly in the pans they were cooked in.
Here some examples:
Tonnarelli cacio e pepe – fresh handmade pasta with parmesan cheese, pecorino and pepper could be a good pick.
Tagliolini al tartufo nero di Tivoli – also handmade pasta with black truffle from Tivoli (a city near Rome) if you are looking for a firmer and more intense flavor. It will come with truffle flakes too!
Coda alla vaccinara – oxtail with raisins, pine nuts and chocolate – is a must-try at least once when visiting Rome. While it was once considered a simple dish, it’s now revered as one of Rome’s most traditional meals. Every restaurant in Trastevere has to have it in the menu. It might get messy, so make sure you tuck a napkin in the collar or your shirt.
For dessert, choose one or a combination of the three most popular dessert choices. Millefoglie, layers of flakey pastry with pastry cream in between, chocolate mousse, or tiramisu! The sweetest way to end a memorable meal.
Tonnarello in Via della Paglia 1/2/3, Roma is another place worth listing among the best restaurants in Trastevere. Come prepared to eat!
Besides the traditional Roman dishes, you will also find the typical pinsa romana. Unlike your average pizza, the pinsa dough goes through many hours of leavening and includes about 80% water, which makes the meal easier to digest. Its origins date way back in the Ancient Rome era, when it was mainly used as a ‘tray’ to put food on – hence the oval shape.
And just like an ancient Roman, you will get to choose your toppings!
These are a few ideas, but if you still have doubts on where to go eat tonight, ask our local for some suggestions!