An Insider's Guide to Rome: Where to Eat, What to See, Where to Stay
The chef-owners-sisters behind Boston's Nebo, Carla and Christine Pallotta, on their favorite spots in the city where their father grew up.
While growing up in Boston's North End, we always felt that we were more Italian than American. Our father's family lived in Rome and our mother's family in Canosa Di Puglia. Over the years we have traveled all over Italy but our favorite spots are where our parents come from.
Who doesn't love Rome? Beautiful architecture, amazing history, the hustle and bustle of a big city with the romantic charm of a small town. On our last visit to Italy, we decided to make it a family trip. A few years ago our brother Jimmy, became the president and owner of the AS Roma Soccer team. This would've been the accomplishment that our late father Jimmy Pallotta, Sr. would have been most proud of.
Our trip's main goal was to visit the stadium and cheer on our favorite team. And even though the city’s little streets and alleys are so familiar to us, we seem to discover a new favorite dish or a secret hideaway every time we visit.
Where to Eat
Best Pastry Shop: Pasticcheria Regoli in Monti, Via dello Statuto, 60, +39-06-487-2812
Although all of the pastry is amazing, the Fagottini di Ricotta will stick with us as one of the best desserts we have ever eaten.
Best Street Food: Filetti Di Baccala, Largo dei Librari, 88, +39-06-686-4018
Crispy fried fish cooked by momma and wrapped in a piece of butcher paper. We choose not to sit in the tiny dining room but to head out with our package and sit on the stoop with all the locals.
Best Pizza al Taglio: Grano, Frutta e Farina, Via della Croce, 49a, +39-06-679-2461
Located near the Spanish stairs, this place is not as famous as some others but their Roman pizza squares are our favorite.
What to See
Best Neighborhood for a Stroll: Monti
Rome's oldest neighborhood is often described as a "Bohemian village." Monti offers alternative shopping, cicchetti, wine bars and hip cafes all while lines of freshly washed linens hang over your head.
Most Beautiful Private Villa: Palazzo Colonna, Via della Pilotta, 17, +39-06-678-4350
Rome is loaded with ancient private villas. Some owned by the government, some where descendants of old aristocratic families still reside in a wing or two, many allowing visitors. Our favorite is Palazzo Colonna where the movie Roman Holiday takes place.
Where to Stay
We arrived in Rome and stayed at the beautiful Hotel Di Russie. Located at the bottom of the Villa Borghese, it has amazing old world charm, exceptional service and an outdoor dining area surrounded by exotic flowers and trees, which we consider Rome's Hidden jewel for people watching. While sitting here you feel as if you're in a scene from the “The Great Beauty".