I have been in Rome many times and I have to confess that I never get tired of eating the good pasta that they prepare here. There are certainly many excellnt restaurants for all kinds of budgets, but pay attention! Not all the restaurants in the eternal city are good. Actually there are many that are terribly bad, tourist traps with rude service and very expensive prices for meals which are not good at all.
So in a city visited by millions it is always important to know where to go. There is a golden rule that I have always heard from my dad: go where the locals go. So that rule applies to Rome too and we can start by actually refering to the places you should never go to if you want to a truly good meal, this is actually easy: avoid the main tourist spots. So restaurants and cafes around the Vatican, Piazza Navonna, the Coloseum and Trastevere may look nice (and certainly there are some really good ones) but most of these places serve expensive and bad food. So where to go? I have here three recomendations that have never left me dissapointed.
1- Trattoria Polesse: Piazza Sforza Cesarini 40, Rome. This is an affordable restaurant. It is located in a little quiet piazza in front of Chiesa Nuova on the Vittorio Emanuele II street. This is a family bussiness that has been around for years. Sometimes during high season you will see tourist groups around, but the rest of the year you will see mostly locals. Tourists prefer to live the cliche and sit outside. I love to sit inside the restaurant since is quieter. Always ask for the recomendations of the day. Their whole menu is quite good, I always go for the risotto or Bucatini all’amatriciana: one of the local plates of Lazio.
2- Abruzzi: Via del Vaccaro 1, Rome. It is located at the end of Piazza SS. Apostoli. A great restaurant that has been in bussiness for years. Very affordable, with the best Carbonara in Rome. They serve as well excellent Saltimbuca alla romana. I recommend as well their appetizer buffet everything is natural, fresh and local. This certainly is my favorite place in Rome and I think that it is a must for any visitor. They are closed on Saturdays.
3- The Cesar Restaurant at La posta Vecchia: If you want to go splurge and enjoy an unforgettable meal you should head to this restaurant. It is not cheap, but the setting is amazing and the food excellent. Reservations are required. The restaurant is in Ladispoli, a beach town just a half hour from Rome by train. It is located next to a castle and the grounds have been transformed into a luxurious boutique hotel.