Cabonara, cacio e pepe, tripe. Here are the trattorias and restaurants in Rome and Lazio, champions of tradition

Dec 2 2023, 19:18
The typical dishes of Roman gastronomy find ample space in the city's restaurants, not only in the traditional ones. Here are the best interpretations of carbonara, cacio e pepe, tripe, boiled meatballs, and oxtail stew according to the new publication by Gambero Rosso

Rome is a city deeply attached to its typical cuisine, which, particularly in some dishes - such as carbonara - has become an international obsession. Not only in trattorias, but in establishments of all kinds, we find cooks who take on the great classics of Roman cuisine. Therefore, in the guide 'Rome and the Best of Lazio 2024,' we aimed to highlight those establishments where one can find some great classics made properly, with the special award 'The Champions of Tradition.' This is without prejudice to the fact that within the pages of the publication, you will also find the venues honored with the 'Three Shrimps' award, representing the best trattorias in Rome and Lazio.


Rome and Lazio, Champions of Tradition 2024

The special award for the best interpretation of typical dishes this year goes to the establishments that serve the five symbolic dishes of the Capital at their best: carbonara, cacio e pepe, Roman-style tripe, oxtail stew, and boiled meatballs. Bistro Baccano is awarded for its carbonara (Chef Nabil has been proving himself a master in this genre for years), while Salumeria Roscioli stands out for its cacio e pepe, a symbolic dish for which the establishment has even created a kit to replicate the recipe at home. At Trattoria Da Cesare on Via del Casaletto, one can savor an impeccable version of Roman-style tripe, while a trip to the historic Testaccio district is worthwhile for Flavio's boiled meatballs at Velavevodetto (worth the journey) and to relish the history and atmosphere of Checchino dal 1887, known for its symbolic dish, oxtail stew, which is said to have originated right there. Here are the details of these venues' offerings.


Nabil Hadj Hassen's culinary realm is located just a stone's throw away from the Trevi Fountain, in an elegant bistro with an international atmosphere. From the partially open kitchen emerges some of the finest pasta one can taste in Rome. The carbonara is truly a must-try, as well as the impeccably executed amatriciana. However, the extensive menu includes Italian and international excellences, ranging from Spanish charcuterie to foie gras. There's also an oyster bar, a rarity in these parts, and a grill. Alongside an extensive and diverse wine list, there's a notable emphasis on mixology, crafting cocktails with great skill.

Baccano – via delle Muratte, 23 – Roma -

Da Cesare

Leonardo Vignoli and Maria Pia Cicconi's neighborhood trattoria is increasingly appreciated by both Italian and international critics for its extremely solid, traditional cuisine centered around well-tested recipes. It begins with the starters, particularly highlighting the fried dishes. Among the first courses, we opted for 'tonnarello' pasta with cod and pecorino, prepared in a Modena style, but there's also a selection of all the classic Roman dishes and numerous seasonal additions, even in the second courses. The Roman-style tripe is exceptional and a dish not to be missed by enthusiasts of this genre. The wine list is rich with surprises. The outdoor space is delightful, especially during the beautiful seasons.

Da Cesare – via del Casaletto, 45 – Roma -

Checchino dal 1887

The undisputed kingdom of the 'fifth quarter,' a cornerstone of Roman cuisine, Checchino has been an institution for over a century. Located in Testaccio, one of the most authentic neighborhoods in the Capital, it stands in the historic slaughterhouse district right across the street from the restaurant. It's a must-visit for those who appreciate tripe, 'coratella,' and the inevitable 'padellotto,' composed of all the cuts of the fifth quarter sautéed in a pan with rosemary and a splash of vinegar, or roasted with salt and pepper. Among the first courses, you'll find carbonara, amatriciana, and cacio e pepe, always accompanied by the cheese cart. The cellar is charming, housing precious labels tucked away in one of Monte Testaccio's natural caves. The service is courteous and professional.

Checchino dal 1887 – via di Monte Testaccio, 30 – Roma -

Flavio al Velavevodetto

Flavio Di Maio's establishment remains over the years a safe haven to dock when craving authentic Roman cuisine made faithfully, without excessive alterations. Here, the rule remains the same: quality ingredients and meticulous execution. The carbonara is a blind choice, with perfectly al dente pasta, just the right creaminess, and crispy guanciale without going overboard. In season, they offer Roman-style artichokes, strictly with garlic and mint, while for those craving fried delights, there are lamb chops, a huge breaded slice, and, of course, the boiled meatballs, a major house specialty. The meal concludes with simple yet well-executed desserts like the delicious ricotta and sour cherry tart. The wine list is well-curated, catering to various tastes, including those who appreciate natural wines. The service is courteous and efficient, even during chaotic weekends.

Flavio al Velavevodetto – via di Monte Testaccio, 97 – Roma -


A few meters from Campo de' Fiori, in the heart of Rome, Roscioli 'salumeria and wine bar' is a mythical spot for lovers of fine wines and culinary excellences. Here, the cuisine is indeed tied to the territory and tradition, yet refined and crafted with the same excellences found for sale - the cacio e pepe is made with egg tonnarelli, PDO Roman pecorino, Moliterno cheese, Sogliano al Rubicone cave-aged pecorino, and a trio of peppercorns - to the extent that Roscioli has over time become one of the best restaurants in Rome. Reservations must be made well in advance because despite the cramped spaces and constant bustling, it remains one of the most popular places for lunch, aperitifs, and dinner. Not just for a luxury experience, but also for an incredible selection of cheeses and cured meats. The same goes for wine: every wall is entirely covered with one of the largest collections of labels from all over Italy and the world.

Salumeria Roscioli - via dei Giubbonari, 21 – Roma -

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