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When people think of Rome what do they think about? The Colosseum, Via Condotti and its luxury and fashion shops, and food, of course! Among all the typical dishes of the Italian cuisine, one of the most famous in the world is certainlythe Roman Cacio e Pepe (literally “cheese and pepper”).
Cacio e Pepe is a first course in Roman cuisine, based on two, simple ingredients: cheese and pepper. What makes unique this pasta is the Pecorino Romano cheese. It is the main ingredient of the traditional recipe due to its strong flavor.
You can taste the Cacio e Pepe almost everywhere in Rome even if some restaurants use the Parmigiano Reggiano cheese instead of the Pecorino ones.
So, if you are planning to take a trip to Italy and you would like to deepen the knowledge of the the typical Roman cuisine, then you cannot miss the opportunity to take part to afood tour Rome during which to hunt for the best Cacio e Pepe.
If you are planning a food tour in Rome by your own or if you want to take part in an organized tour, there are some things you should know first.
The first thing to know is that not all the neighborhoods of Rome are the same. Some districts are very touristy and they offer very expensive solutions where to eat, or ethnic proposals. It could be not so easy to find a traditional Roman trattoria where to taste the original Cacio e Pepe. So, let’s have your touristic tour there but look for more frequented districts for your meal.
On the other side there are some other districts, such as Trastevere or Rione Monti, that are very interesting from the tourist point of view even if they are a bit far from the historical city center. The Romans prefer to have lunch and dinner here because they are quieter neighborhoods, far from the crowds, and also because here there are more traditional options and a wider choice of restaurants and bars. These are the ideal places where to scout the perfect Cacio e Pepe.
At least, you may like to know that not all the restaurants are the same in Rome.
Do you know the difference between ristorante, osteria and trattoria? If no, let’s go on reading this guide for the perfect food tour Rome.
While having a food tour in Rome, as well as in any other Italian city, probably you will find several sings on the shops telling “trattoria” or “osteria” or “ristorante”. These are not the same thing even if they are all places where to have a meal.
As you probably know, a “ristorante” or restaurant is the typical place where to sit and have a lunch or a dinner, from the antipasto to the dessert. Remember that Italy meals are made up of several courses, unlike what you might be used to.
Restaurants in the most touristic district could be very expensive. Usually, they are also formal places and offer specialities from the local cuisine, even if they are not made according to the traditional recipe.
The “osteria” is an informal place where to drink wine, first of all. In Italian cuisine tradition, the osteria was not a place where to have a meal. Nowadays, it is possible to find a few of these traditional venues in some parts of Italy even if a great part of them are now food oriented. They also offer traditional specialities but they are usually expensive.
At least, the “trattoria” is the most informal place where to eat and drink. It is usually a family run business where to taste local foods and dishes are made according to the traditional recipe. This is the ideal place where to taste the original Cacio e Pepe, of course!