A Day in Rome
This guide won’t take you to the Colosseum or St. Peter’s Basilica.
But it will take you to some of the best-kept secrets in the city.
I’m not a tour guide, but I know food — well.
So spend a day with me and we’ll walk some of the less known streets of the Eternal City.
Let’s eat (and drink) well together.
9 am Colazione (breakfast)
Breakfast isn’t really an Italian thing. It’s simple, quick and often had at the local bar before or after a morning commute. Ask your hotel concierge or Airbnb host where to go. Stand at the bar. Order a cappuccino e cornetto (croissant with less butter) and start your day like an Italian.
10 am Walk the cobblestone streets
Work up an appetite as you wander the streets and take in all the beauty Rome has to offer. Put Campo de’ Fiori in Google maps and start walking. The piazza hosts a (touristy) outdoor market — take a quick look then let yourself get lost down the small side streets that are home to several quaint boutiques.
1 pm Pranzo (lunch)
Antico Forno Roscioli, a historic bakery in the heart of Rome, that’s always worth a visit. The pizza is sold by weight and you can order hot plates if you’d like. It’ll be busy. Place your order, pay at the register and take your receipt to collect your food.
If you’d like to sit down and have a full-service meal with an exceptional bottle of wine, I suggest you visit the Roscioli restaurant, which you’ll find just around the corner. Reservation required.
4 pm Gelato hour
Yes, it’s a thing. As it should be. Head up the Janiculum Hill to Monteverde and visit La Gourmandise. There, you’ll find locally-sourced gelato that is crafted with care, pride and love. The artisanal shop offers seasonal flavors that’ll make your taste buds dance — thyme and lemon cream, coconut and myrtle berries, Roman mint and lemon zest, candied citron ricotta and many more. They have four variations of chocolate, two of pistachio and their Madagascar vanilla has so many vanilla beans it pops like caviar in your mouth.
5 pm La Passeggiata (an evening stroll)
Take a leisurely stroll through Villa Pamphili, a large historical park in Rome. Built in 1630 by the nobel Roman Pamphili family, the vast space will leave you feeling like you’ve escaped the ancient city.
7 pm Aperitivo (happy hour)
With outdoor seating and a great selection of natural wines, Litro is a staple for locals. Select a bottle of wine and order bruschette: burro e alici e con pomodoro al pinneolo and tagliere di salumi. If you have any questions, ask. The friendly and outgoing staff will be more than happy to help.
9 pm Cena (dinner)
Hostaria da Settimio, the Roman restaurant you dream of: a handful of tables, red checkered tablecloths, cured meat hanging from the ceiling and no written menu. Claudia, the woman in charge, comes by to let you know what’s available — three tables order at once and she commands your attention. They host two seatings a night and you’ll need a reservation. Order fritto misto, salami e formaggio con mozzarella di bufala, pappardelle con cinghiale, cicoria e un litro vino di casa (rosso). Add a second pasta (if you happen to go on a Thursday, opt for a plate of gnocchi) and you’ll be set for two. All for close to 60€.
11 pm Drink with the Romans
Young Romans fill Bar del Fico, where the drinks are well made and a DJ plays until 2 am. Outside tables rarely come and quickly go during warm summer months so make sure you keep an eye out … or make some new friends.
Salotto42 hosts a slightly more sophisticated crowd, who are sure to be well dressed and poised as they sip enticing cocktails on leather chairs and velvet couches. The dim, candlelit lounge has a seductive feel — an allure if you will.
Take your pick or visit both, they’re in walking distance of one another.
When you’re ready to call it a night, take in the beautiful city as you stroll to Piazza Navona, Fontana di Trevi or the Pantheon. Each a must see and breathtaking by moonlight, they happen to be just a short walk from both Bar del Fico and Salotto42.
If you’re looking to dance head to Alcazar Live in Trastevere or Radio Lundra in Testaccio. Live entertainment is booked nightly at Alcazar, a theatre turned bar and music venue, and Radio Lundra hosts some of Europes best DJs.
Via dei Giubbonari, 21/22, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
+39 06 687 5287
M-Sat 12:30 pm - 4 pm, 7 pm - 12 am
Antico Forno Roscioli
Via dei Chiavari, 34, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
+39 06 686 4045
M-Sat 7 am - 8 pm
Sun 8:30 am - 7 pm
Via Felice Cavallotti, 36b, 00152 Roma RM, Italy
+39 06 9603 9081
Tu-Sun 10 am - 12 am
Via Fratelli Bonnet, 5, 00152 Roma RM, Italy
+39 06 4544 7639
M-Th 6 pm - 1 am
Fri 6 pm - 2 am
Sat 12:20 pm -3:30 pm, 6 pm - 2 am
Hostaria da Settimio
Via di Val Tellina, 81, 00151 Roma RM, Italy
+39 06 5823 0701
Tu-Sat 11:30 am - 3 pm, 6:30 pm - 11:30 pm
Sun 11:30 am - 3 pm
Bar del Fico
Piazza del Fico, 26, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
+39 06 6889 1373
Daily 7 am - 2 am
Piazza di Pietra, 42, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
+39 06 678 5804
Daily 10:30 am - 2 am
Via Cardinale Merry del Val, 14b, 00153 Roma RM, Italy
+39 340 560 1705
Via di Monte Testaccio, 67, 00153 Roma RM, Italy
Th-Sat 11:30 pm - 6 am