If you haven’t read the first part of my experience with Eating Italy Food Tours, take a look here.
After a thorough tour of the Testaccio Market, we were off for a sit-down meal in one of Testaccio’s best restaurants: Flavio al Velavevodetto. The restaurant is located at the base of a (wo)man-made hill that is the result of Romans throwing away their used terracotta pots. If you look closely at the photos below, you’ll see the actual shards of what my tour guide called “Ancient Roman Tupperware.”
Sidenote: The restaurant’s name had a great story behind it–apparently the owner, Flavio, had always dreamed of owning his own restaurant. Unfortunately, he was surrounded by a bunch of naysayers who didn’t believe he’d ever find the money to open his restaurant, so the name he dedicated to them: it basically means “I told ya so”. Love the feistiness, Flavio!
Our table in the restaurant was right next to these three glass windows, offering a peek at the hillside made of pottery.
My attention soon turned from ancient pots to pasta as the waiters dropped off heaping plates of Cacio e Pepe (a simple dish of pasta, Pecorino cheese and freshly ground black pepper), Amatriciana (pasta smothered in a sauce made with a tomato base featuring cured pork cheek and Percorino) and lastly, Carbonara (eggs, cheese, and pancetta.)
We happily sampled all three Roman specialties over glasses of red and white Italian wine until we were pleasantly stuffed. Pulling on our jackets while noting our pants fit a bit more snugly, the group headed out the door into the crisp winter air. It was time for…you guessed it! Yet a couple more stops.
Roman Fast Food
This fried ball of risotto, along with pizza al taglio, is the Roman take on fast food. Called Supplì, it’s risotto that’s battered in egg and breadcrumbs and then deep-fried. It may not be pretty to look at, but it was delicious.
La Dulce Vita
Our final stop included a lesson on the difference between gelato and ice-cream (gelato is made with whole milk instead of cream, so it’s actually “healthier” for you!) and of course, a generous tasting. I loved how many places in Rome offer fresh, hand-whipped cream to top off your gelato–I couldn’t resist!
Many thanks to Kenny and his team at Eating Italy Food Tours for offering me a complimentary tour of Testaccio; all opinions (and weight gained as a result!) are my own. The tour is 65 Euros for adults and 45 Euros for children, lasts around 4 hours and includes stops at over 7 places with 12 tastings. If you book with them, tell them I sent you!