In the past two days I’ve been to two good old Roman basic restaurants that served delicious meals and a whole bunch of good old Roman basic tourist spots. (My parents are visiting.)
Last night: Il Galeone, in Piazza San Cosimato, just down the hill from us: either take the bus down the S-curves of Via Dandolo, or take the path through the grass to the two twisting staircases. It’s one of those places that you really can’t judge from the outside. Does it just look authentic, or is it really good? I wouldn’t have tried it without the recommendations of numerous friends, who all said to order the fish soup. OK. But what do they mean by “mezzo” (half)? Here’s what:
These sea creatures have as much dignity in this dish as the octopus wrestling with Neptune in Piazza Navona:
Other fun things about this restaurant were the service—or was it just that the gentleman loved Jack, who ate a lot of spaghetti carbonara?
—or was it that he made a show of choosing the right glasses for the low-price-range vino rosso we chose?
(which turned out to be quite good.)
And the walls in our dining room, made of old liquor boxes, as if they were packed in a ship’s hold:
The tuna, before and after:
And the walk home past the Fontana di Aqua Paola:
This meal topped off a day of serious ancient-Rome tourism. We went to the Capitolino, and saw Constantine’s giant digits, Diana of Ephesus’s many breasts, and Hercules’s manly pecs.
We also saw the Forum and waited out a rainstorm.
And we happened upon a Ferrari parade. Holiday sale?
That was yesterday. Today, we did the Vatican Museum, Via Cola da Rienza, Piazza del Popolo, Via del Corso, Piazza di Spagna, the Trevi Fountain, and more, in the rain. We found a warm spot and a surprisingly delicious lunch at Il Fagiolo Magico, (the magic bean) off of Via del Corso. I had pasta cacio e pepe—cheese and pepper. The consistency is hard to get right, but they did it. Very restorative with the vino rosso della casa on a damp day.