La Dolce Vita in Rome involves a lot more than bathing in fountains and running away from the paparazzi. Food here is a way of life, as it is for most Italians (mama's cooking sets the bar very high). And so it goes without saying that for the Romans, eating well and enjoying local and international delicacies is very important. From gourmet shops to fish restaurants and trendy bars, the Italian capital has a lot to offer.
Salumeria Roscioli, delicatessen and restaurant
Forget about the traditional pizzeria that once stood between these walls. When brothers Alessandro and Pierluigi Roscioli took over Salumeria Roscioli, they transformed their father's restaurant into a high-end delicatessen and restaurant. What really stands out is the sheer amount of products available for purchase. Fabulous cheeses, cold meats and salamis, mustards, oils of all sorts, pasta… That’s just the food. Bottles of Italian and international wines are stacked from floor to ceiling. The shop boasts over 2800 references. Ask the owners any question about wine, and they will know the answer. The ‘pairing hampers’ to take home are a must: try the Dom Pérignon and Paleta di Pata Negra Carrasco hamper, it is divine.
Assunta Madre, restaurant
Head here for possibly the best fish and seafood in town. Assunta Madre is an institution. Italian and international celebrities flock to this restaurant, as the many photos of actors, fashion designers and politicians standing next to the owner Giovanni “Johnny” Milacusi demonstrate. Inside, the restaurant is simple. No designer chairs or modern art to divert the eye from the delicacies in the plate. A few decoration updates here and there wouldn’t go amiss, though. True to Assunta Madre's slogan 'from the sea to the table', all the ingredients on the menu are fresh, bought daily from the Terracina fish market in the city.
The terrace of the Stravinsky bar at the Hôtel de Russie, bar
If discretion and understated luxury is what you are after, then the cool oasis of the bar Stravinsky at the Hôtel de Russie is just the place for you. This quiet haven tucked away from the crowds was once loved by artists and intellectuals such as Pablo Picasso, Jean Cocteau and Vaslav Nijinsky. The inner terrace and hidden gardens lie just a stone's throw away from the Piazza del Popolo. There is no better place for a peach Bellini at the end of a long, hot day.
Zuma Rome, restaurant
Never judge a book by its cover, they say. Zuma is the perfect place for those who like surprises. The Palazzo Fendi, a beautiful 18th-century historic building in the heart of Rome, was entirely restored in 2016 for the fashion brand Fendi. You emerge on the fourth floor of the Palazzo into an unexpected contemporary Japanese wooden interior. The contrast between the two is exquisite. This is where Japanese cuisine meets classic Italian architecture. Since its opening, Zuma has become one of the best - and trendiest - restaurants in town. Everything about the place is spot on: the location, the décor and of course the food and beverages. On the menu, sushi and sashimi are served alongside signature dishes such as miso-marinated black cod wrapped in hoba leaf or Japanese wagyu beef with yuzu tahoon and fresh wasabi from the robata grill. Savour a glass of Krug or Ruinart champagne in the bar above before heading home.
La.Vi. restaurant and bar
La.Vi.'s intriguing name is an acronym for Latteria & Vineria: dairy and wine. This restaurant spread over three levels can be enjoyed from morning to evening. Enjoy Italian cuisine 'with a twist' in either the bistrot, 'hamburgeria', lounge or roof garden. In the ‘hamburgeria', chips topped with smoked cheese or the pasta amatriciana are very popular, while mouth-watering grilled octopus or rack of lamb with pistachio and celeriac are among some more sophisticated fare offered in the bistrot. For afternoon tea, head up to the roof garden and soak up the sun's rays.