The first thing that comes to mind when you think of the area around the Vatican is: touristy. But whilst there are a lot of tourist trap restaurants and bars, it’s worth remembering that it’s also an area where a lot of Romans actually live – meaning there are some really authentic restaurants, if you know where to look!
Pizzeria Giacomelli is one of these, turning out great Roman dishes and woodfired pizzas since the 1950s. It’s a no-nonsense kind of place, with bright lighting and hard seats, but bundles of personality – the walls are covered with photos of the owner with various celebrities through the years, and the staff are always happy to help.
The pastas are all good, but I usually go for the pizza – thin and crispy, as they should be in Rome, and almost criminally cheap. If you’re a fan of spicy pizzas, I’d recommend the Nduja and Onion one – medium is usually the best size to get, unless you’re super hungry! If you want a starter first, do as the Romans do and order something fried – Fiori di Zucca (courgette flower) and Suppli (fried rice balls) are good choices.