Italy: Dolce Vita in Rome
We love the Eternal City’s Berninis and Borrominis, but we’re even more smitten with Roma’s pastas and pecorinos. Our ultimate food day? Buon giorno! The breakfast cornetto—usually a plain dunk-into-caffè matter—reaches exalted heights at Cristalli di Zucchero (88 Via di San Teodoro; breakfast for two $6), right by the Bocca della Verità. The light-as-air pastry is filled with cherry jam or cream, and the cappuccino is perfection. Hop the metro to the Cipro stop, and hurry, please—the feathery pizza romana sells out in a flash at dime-size Pizzarium (pizza for two $25). Try the now-classic potato-topped pizza di patate—plus the fig-and-cured-pork combo.
Refire your appetite with a stroll through the handsome Prati district. Then go to L’Arcangelo (lunch for two $120) for sublime baccalà, roast lamb, and the definitive gnocchi all’amatriciana—every ingredient is fanatically sourced. Back in the centro storico’s former Jewish ghetto, time stands still (and so does the queue!) at Pasticceria Boccione (pastries for two $7), ruled by the brusque matriarchs of the Limentani clan. What is this plump flatbread with pine nuts and candied fruit? “Jewish pizza!” barks one of the dames from behind the counter. Supper is at Campo de’ Fiori’s Salumeria-Vineria Roscioli (21 Via dei Giubbonari; dinner for two $140), folded inside a chic deli. Start with smoked fish and puntarelle salad with anchovy dressing. Next, toothsome tonarelli cacio e pepe made with three types of pecorino and Malaysian pepper. Our buona notte: a fondue of dark Amedei chocolate. —Anya von Bremzen
Rome’s Best Gelato: Time for a sweet diversion. In Prati, Gelateria dei Gracchi has gained buzz as one of Italy’s best for its ingredient obsession. For more than a century, crowds have lined up at Giolitti, near the Pantheon, for seasonal fruit flavors, while the innovative Fatamorgana (9 Via Lago di Lesina) has surprising combos such as pimento-chocolate and celery-lime.
T+L Tip: Rome-based food writer Elizabeth Minchilli leads private walking tours of the city’s most delicious neighborhoods.