Who would have guessed? So many of you keep asking us for the Christmas and New Year’s Eve selection we traditionally post every year. So, it is a great pleasure for us to pass our recommendations over to you. Your interest is highly rewarding as it gives us a sense of accomplishment and fulfillment to realize we have been able to increase the effectiveness of our contribution to this point…
Well, let us get into the “real thing” and review what is expected this year from the places we like. We wrote this in a hurry as there is little time left for reservations. Heard on the street: the trend seem to be this year that more and more people, including locals, choose to gather in a restaurant for a special lunch or dinner in order to enjoy their time together.As an example, what is one of the reference places for us, “Roberto e Loretta”, has been sold out for a few days now! By the way, we are including here only menus within the 250 Euros. There are interesting more expensive offers too of course and you can easily get menus and all the information you may need in the restaurants web sites. Worth a mention (and some links!): the single Michelin 3-stars restaurant in Rome La Pergola @ the Cavalieri Hilton hotel, plus the other “celebrities” Oliver Glowig @ the Aldovrandi, Il Pagliaccio and La Terrazza dell’Eden.
Below our recommendations with a split in Central Rome and other areas for your convenience.
You can follow us on twitter as well as facebook for last-minute updates which we will try to show here as well!
Antico Arco at the Gianicolo hill (map). Over time it stays as a reference in town, with preparations created by the young Albanian chef Fundim Gjepali that never let you down and with its location, within walking distance from one of the breathtaking “natural rooftops” in Rome. Open on New Year’s Eve: an 8-dish sophisticated menu based on earth and sea products. You can find here pictures and menu dishes. Prices: New Year’s Eve 200€ (including a champagne bottle for a 4-people table, takeaway flûte to celebrate at midnight on the Gianicolo, and the traditional Cotechino with lentils after midnight).
Flavio al Velavevodetto in Testaccio and in Prati @ Quiriti (maps). By now a well-known reference for Roman Cuisine. Open on Christmas day and on New Year’s day (lunch) with a shorter à la carte menu where you will find anyhow some seasonal dishes such as tortellini in broth. Price: à-la-carte (35€ in average plus drinks).
Glass Hostaria in Trastevere (map). Here we go with another Michelin star confirmation! One of our most beloved food-corners, by Cristina Bowerman & Fabio Spada. While the first one puts in creativity and energy with a genial touch, the second one provides experience and savoir faire. Result of this mix: evenings which stay impressed in your mind for a long time. Open on New Year’s Eve with a real special occasion menu (available in English too, just read it through!). Price: New Year’s Eve 190€ (including aperitif, Champagne at midnight, and takeaway panettone for your breakfast, other drinks not included).
Imàgo at the Hotel Hassler, in the heart of Rome over the Spanish Steps (map). Panoramic view and starred cuisine by Francesco Apreda who needs no introduction. Open on Christmas and New Year’s Eve for dinner, it features a brunch menu at lunch time. Here you can find the menus in English too. In particular we are referencing the brunch because the rest lies well above 250€! Prices: Christmas and New Year’s day, 130€ each (not including drinks).
L’Asino d’oro in Monti (map). Time goes by, but still this place stands as a secluded place where you can spend a lovely evening! To keep you company, the expert cuisine by Lucio Sforza, the warm service and the atmosphere at the same time simple and informal. Open on New Year’s Eve, click here for the menu (in Italian). Prices: 80€ including wines.
Pipero al Rex in the Termini Train Station area (map). Again a star, a new Michelin star! Right, slightly more than a year has passed since Alessandro Pipero left Albano – the location where his fame has blossomed – and started a new adventure at the Rex Hotel along with the young chef Luciano Monosilio. Slightly more than a year we said, but one of the highest rewards has already arrived. The mix of ingredients making up a dish always surprise – right away when you read the name on the menu – and these occasions are no exception. Open on Christmas as well as on New Year’s Eve. Here are the special menus, at the moment available only in Italian and here our recent blog post, written in Italian too. For information in English we recommend to read Katie Parla review. Price: Christmas Eve 180€, Christmas Day Lunch 150€, New Year’s Eve 250€ (include champagne-based aperitif and do not include any other drink).
Vino e Camino in the Historical Center near via Giulia / Corso Vittorio (map). Are you up to spend a few hours in an atmosphere which takes you back to family traditions and to preparations which will surely make you feel cozy and warm? Well, this is the place! Open on New Year’s Eve. Menu and Price still not available (it should be under 100€).
OTHER ROME AREAS
All’Oro in Parioli (map). As always is the young chef Riccardo Di Giacinto who is leading the way, making a Michelin star keep shining in the restaurant. Open both on Christmas (Eve and Lunch) and on New Year’s Eve (dinner) with special menus where as usual tradition, creativity, earth and sea meet. Here you can find the menus (in Italian). Prices: Christmas Eve Dinner 145€, Christmas Lunch 120€, New Year’s Eve 180€ (drinks not included).
Da Cesare al Casaletto in Monteverde (map). One of the places where we head for experiencing an authentic Roman cuisine fully loyal to the tradition. Open on Christmas and on New Year’s Day (Lunch) with an “à la carte” menu (even though choice is slightly more limited as compared to the usual abundance). Please, if showing in the menu, do not miss eggplant croquettes, tail croquettes, carbonara/gricia and gnocchi! Price: à-la-carte (35€ in average plus drinks).
Giuda Ballerino in the Tuscolana area (map). Forget downtown with its historical solemn tone, and get into the metropolitan folklore, a few blocks away from Cinecittà. This is the place where – surrounded by comics and modern notes – the Giuda Ballerino (“Judas the Dancer” from a Dylan Dog comic sentence) lives according to his two “souls”: restaurant and hostaria, under the guide of the chef Andrea Fusco, just (re)awarded a Michelin star. Open on Christmas (Eve and Lunch) and on New Year’s Eve: for these occasions the two souls merge into one. Here you can find the menus (at the moment the menu in English link is broken). Prices: Christmas Eve and Lunch 55€, New Year’s Eve 90€ (both not including drinks).
Metamorfosi in the Parioli area (map). Another Michelin star, but this is brand new! You will be in the capable hands of the chef Roy Caceres and of the sous chef John R. @caputmundicibus, not to mention the entire friendly staff, and will linger on a mix of innovation and tradition which – we bet – will gratify your senses. Open on New Year’s Eve with a catchy menu. Price: New Year’s Eve 220€ (drinks not included).
L’Osteria di Monteverde right in the heart of the quarter it is named after (map). One of the best quality/price ratios in town which will make you feel at home thanks to a cheerful service and the nice informal atmosphere. A cuisine deeply rooted in the region which often dares – and with amazing results – shuffle the cards and get creative. Open on New Year’s Eve with a 6-dish menu with selected wines: here all the details on the dishes (in Italian). Prices: New Year’s Eve 60€. For Christmas day catering service is provided (upon reservation requested by no later than Tuesday, December 18).
Romeo Chef&Baker in Prati (map). This is really a novelty! Showed up lately – very lately – in the Roman scenario, but Romeo has already been on everyone’s mouth… This does not come as a surprise when a new venue is led by the Bowerman/Spada (yes, them again… and lucky us to have them!) alongside the Roscioli brothers! Open on New Year’s Eve offering an original menu (available in English too) and also promoting a fun initiative for singles: 10 dedicated bar-seats at a reduced price. Price: New Year’s Eve 110€ and 80€ for “single seats” (aperitif and midnight champagne included, other rinks not included).
Salotto Culinario in the Tuscolana area, close to the GRA (map). Closed on Christmas and New Year’s day. However, the chef Dino de Bellis, a recent top figure of our contest dedicated to the best Carbonara-Amatriciana-Cacio&Pepe in Rome, has promoted for these holidays the initiative “Cucinati per le feste” i.e. 5 takeaway menus which will be served vacuum-packed along with indications to finalize the preparation at home. Price ranges between 25 and 45 Euro for a takeaway menu.
Enjoy Rome on Christmas Season and have a look to our scheduled Food Tours!
Last but not least, special thanks to Aldo for the kind help with the English translation.
Images: restaurants web sites, ziofrankie, Tavole Romane – All Rights Reserved