Flavio Velavevodoto ai Quiriti – Piazza dei Quiriti, 4/5 – click here for the link.
There are two “Temples of Roman Cuisine” (according to their website), one in Prati and one in the neighbourhood of Testaccio. The “room” was comfy, with loads of mirrors and really nice lighting…making for a very cozy evening. Prati is our “hood” and so the choice was an easy one, walk-able and well known for their use of the “fifth quarter,” (the Roman tradition for cooking offal). Partner in eating needs some! Can there ever be too much pasta? Nope…not in our books! Joe needs a “hit of heat” so orders tagliatelle with ‘Nduja, a very spicy, soft, spreadable Calabrian sausage, tomato sauce, topped with Burrata, a speciality of the house. My pasta of choice is anything on tonnarelli, square shaped spaghetti that I adore, this time it’s cacio e pepe, a very good version with lots of freshly ground black pepper although I might have liked it to be a bit creamier. Next up for Joe, finally, Roman style tripe…his first tripe of the trip! Loved it! I had in mind oxtails but I’ve been eating them almost every day so when I spotted the Genovese beef and onion stew I had to have it! It was fantastic with chunks of tender, moist cubes of beef enrobed in beefy-oniony sauce. I am definitely going to make this at home! I didn’t miss the oxtails one bit! And all washed down with an excellent Vino Nobile from Montepulciano! The portions are very generous and even though we had a very light lunch…there was no way either of us could finish our secondi! A thoroughly enjoyable dinner and a definite two thumbs up from us!
Enoteca Cavour 313 – Via Cavour, 313 – click here for the link.
We did a walk by in the afternoon after they had closed for the lunch trade, to check out the menu and it looked fine. Then we had a nice walk around Monti, stopped for an apertivo…have you ever noticed how many “crisps” i.e. potato chips are served in Rome when you order a drink? We were quite surprised! But back to Enoteca Cavour! We ordered a few things to share and a very good bottle of Vino Nobile from Montelpulciano. I think our impression, and we are still puzzled, is the décor, all wooden beams, wooden booths, wooden dividers…just didn’t get the theme at all (early, early Roman??). And the food was ho hum; probably somewhere one might go for a selection of salumi, cheeses and wine in the early evening. Although Joe said he found the “chili-seasoned pork crackling” sort of addictive. I found it beyond chewy to say the least, more like really chewy jerky. I think he needed his daily hit of chilies! The carpaccio with arugula was fine but then how hard is that! We would not return and would not recommend, except, perhaps for that apertivo previously mentioned.
Da Giggetto al Portico d’Ottavia – Via Alessandria, 43 – click here for the link.
I read lots of reviews and comments and it seems that everyone loves this place in the Ghetto that’s been there forever, actually 1923 to be exact. Da Giggetto had been on our “places to check out” for a few years and we never got there…so we decided to give it a try for a Sunday lunch. This is certainly a go-to place for family get-together’s with lots of small well-behaved children around…crazy busy! The interior of the restaurant is charming with a number of different “rooms.” I was fascinated by how the service staff retrieves wine bottles from the top shelves on a wall…a very long pole with some kind of hook on the end and voila…here comes the wine! Didn’t see anyone drop one, including ours! Joe ordered zucchini blossoms stuffed with mozzarella and anchovy…as I don’t like anchovies I had to settle for a bit of the blossom only and was disappointed to find it soggy and not crisp…I do love my blossoms crisp! My Jewish style artichoke was pretty much what we have had everywhere else in Rome. Joe followed up his zucchini blossoms with fried anchovies that he liked and I had a plate of fried calamari and shrimp…acceptable but not a big WOW. In fact, I have to say I’ve had far better calamari at Greek Restaurants in Vancouver, so unfortunately, a letdown. All in all, we enjoyed the atmosphere a lot but would not be in a rush to go back. And how come the smokers get to eat outside on the patio anyway??