Portico d’Ottavia, Pantheon, San Giovanni, Prati, Pinciano, Trastevere & Testaccio. Let’s end this gastronomic line up by visiting some markets. There are a few streets in every district that come to life every morning when the stalls are set up, but the best place to go to enjoy a stroll amongst an array of vegetables, meats, cold cuts and cheese is undoubtedly Campo de’ Fiori, one of the city’s oldest markets. It’s a place in which the image of Rome and all the legends that the cinema, art and poetry have spread throughout the world can still be found. In the shadow cast by the statue of Giordano Bruno, a 16th century philosopher and exponent of free thought, you will find an explosion of colours and aromas. Those selling the vegetables and wines they have produced themselves stand proudly by their stalls that are stacked with broccoli, salad crops and artichokes, pumpkins in a multitude of shapes and sizes, bunches of chilli peppers, bunches of red and white grapes and pomegranates. Stalls selling spices can also still to be found, as can those specialising in fresh, tasty and fragrant mixed salad leaves, whilst fishermen set out their catch and loudly invite people to buy.
The market in Testaccio is also deservedly popular. Up until a few years ago it was set up in the district’s main square, but now has a new home in a covered structure next to the old slaughterhouse. It sells everything and anything. A few of the stalls, mentioned enthusiastically in prestigious foreign newspapers, are certainly worth finding if you want to try a roll filled with tripe or various fried items served in a paper cone. Foodies will be in paradise.
A galaxy of flavours in the very heart of Esquilino, Rome’s multiethnic district.
A melting pot of languages, cultures and food, the Esquilino market brings together typically Italian produce such as artichokes, chicory and olives together with exotic food that is not so easily found in other parts of the city.
Midst the hum of different languages and mingling of scents and colours, one is spoilt for a choice of fish, meat, bread, fruit, vegetables and spices from all four corners of the globe.
For those of you with a shopping bug, there is also another part of the market to perhaps pick up a bargain or simply wander through the clothes, textiles, bags and shoes, all of which with that distinctly worldly flavour.
As to the indisputable king of Roman gastronomy, our local wine is served in every traditional trattoria and historic eatery (fraschetta) in the capital. Red, white, rosé, sparkling and “tantalizing”, it used to be transported from the surrounding countryside and the Castelli district on traditional wine carts. A visit to the Castelli district to taste it is certainly worthwhile, perhaps accompanied by some traditional “porchetta”- slices of pork from a whole slowroasted pig stuffed with aromatic herbs.
To complete your gastronomic journey, why not go to Ostia to try some spaghetti with clams (telline) – at sunset maybe, when the sea beyond Rome’s ancient port turns pink.
aperto dal lunedì al sabato dalle 7.00 alle 14.00