Monday, December 26, 2011


My family is in town, visiting from the United States, and we are touring the city during the holidays. The weather is unusually warm and beautifully sunny, and it's wonderful for me to see my city through their eyes. Here is a first batch of photos taken during a fantastic tour of the Palatine Hill, Forum and Colosseum, organized by the always reliable Context Travel. I may be biased (I work for them as culinary docent, leading gourmet tours of the city) but the knowledge, breadth of information, passion and expertise shared by the scholars at Context is boundless. Our docent introduced and revealed aspects of the sites I was not familiar with. It was a truly spectacular experience visiting them with my loved ones.

Saturday, December 17, 2011


I'm a sucker for Christmas lights. For the 150th anniversary of Italy's unification, Rome put on quite a show with its Via del Corso mile-long flag. But the rest of the city is no less decked out.
Fendi always does the best Christmas decorations. This year the gold belt was added with sparkly melting icicles, and every 20 minutes or so, it snows! There are models in reindeer costume that take photos of kids with Santa and meake free buttons out of them. Posh Via Condotti is decorated with giant chandeliers, and for snowball fans, there's a huge one with a big tree inside it and blowing snow in the main entrance of the Galleria Alberto Sordi.
For more awesome images of Rom'e holiday look please head over at Moscerina's light show post.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011


More social lately, which is good. But the alcohol intake is concerning.
Last week I met friends for aperitivo at Vinaietto, and the next day I attended an offbeat wedding reception held in a warehouse of an ex-repair shop off Via Flaminia.
I need to detox and it's not even Christmas yet...

Friday, December 9, 2011


The new Christmas lights along Via del Corso were finally lit up today, I've been seeing workers hang the long strands all along the thoroughfare that stretches from Piazza Venezia to Piazza del Popolo for the past week.
On December 8th we celebrate the Immaculate Conception, and customarily take the following day off work if this happens near a weekend. We call this "il ponte," the bridge. This day also marks the beginning of the holiday season in Rome, and traditionally the time in which decorations go up.

Monday, December 5, 2011

fontana di trevi

Trevi Fountain is the largest Baroque fountain in the city and one of the most famous in the world, also thanks to the famous nighttime scene of Fellini's Dolce Vita.

A traditional legend holds that if visitors throw a coin into the fountain, they are ensured a return to Rome. An estimated €3,000 are thrown into the fountain each day...

Saturday, December 3, 2011


Steps away fromt the Cipro metro stop, near the Vatican, there's a little shop called Pizzarium, owned by an influential bread baker named Gabriele Bonci. Pizzarium stocks flours, freshly baked bread, beers and other selected products. The pizza is displayed in large rectangular trays, sold by the slice, and nothing like you've ever tasted.

That's because Bonci employs a long fermentation process, natural yeasts, high quality flour and love. It's always a good idea to snack on the pizza al taglio on the premises (no seating, so you hve to elbow your way to the front of the counter), and then buy a loaf of bread to bring home.

These shown here are just a few of the pizzas available, which are made express daily. But according to the time of day, ingredients available, and whim of the baker, you may find completely different choices than what's pictured above.

photo 1:
plain tomato base, topped with fresh mozzarella di bufala and basil leaves;
pizza bianca topped with smoked salmon, mozzarella di bufala and grilled radicchio tardivo;
plain tomato base, seasoned with hot chili olive oil, and parsley.

photo 2:
pizza bianca, sliced open and stuffed with smoked caciocavallo and ham;
pizza bianca, sliced open and stuffed with prized mortadella.

photo 3:
pizza bianca, topped with cherry tomatoes, stewed porcini mushrooms and parsley;
plain tomato base, topped with sautéed broccoli raab, fresh mozzarella di bufala, and grilled anchovies;
pizza bianca (made with a different flour), sliced open and stuffed with smoked caciocavallo, speck and arugula;
in the background, an open-faced crostino covered with crumbled sausages and melted cheese.

I bet you're hungry all of a sudden.

Pizzarium is located at Via della Meloria 43 – Open Monday to Saturday – Tel. +39 06 3974 5416