There may be more restaurants near Rome pantheon than in any other part of Rome. How do you know which ones are good?
The area around the pantheon is chock full of restaurants, some touristy, and others less so. Of course, if you eat in the center of Rome, near a monument like this, you are going to run into other tourists. But plenty of Romans live in the historic center also, and a lot of the restaurants near Rome pantheon have a local clientele.
I've heard a few Romans say you can't eat well in the center of Rome. I strongly disagree. This is one of the areas where I eat out the most in Rome, because some of my favorite Rome restaurants are here!
There are many wonderful restaurants near Rome pantheon ... which kind would you like?
There are quite a few restaurants near Rome pantheon where you can eat outside. If you eat right on the piazza where the pantheon is, Piazza della Rotonda, you will pay for the privilege, i.e. it will be expensive. And it's pretty touristy. And the food is not likely to be anything great.
But, I know this can be a special thing, to eat while gazing at this amazing building. So by all means if you feel like doing it, you should!
For me, the quality of a place to eat should always be about the food. But ambiance, location, service and cost also play a part.
And I know that when the weather gets even a little nice, people want to eat outside. Many places I recommend on this page do have some form of outdoor seating, and I've included this info for each of them.
You can certainly find wonderful Roman food near the Pantheon. These places cater to their local clientele, meaning they are not "touristy."
Yes, you will run into other tourists there, especially if you go on the early side (7 or 7:30pm.) But if you book for 9 or later (or for a 2pm lunch), you will not only be eating where the Romans eat, but also with them!
Armando is truly a local Roman restaurant, with typical Roman cuisine. Established in 1961 by Armando Gargioli (whose sons Claudio and Fabrizio now run the place), it's one of the most traditional restaurants near Rome pantheon.
I eat here when I can, including for lunch. They have all the classic Roman pastas, but sometimes I like to get whatever their special is. They also have wonderful, simple soups (very Roman.)
But no matter what you do, save room for dessert and try their ricotta pie. It is out of this world.
Details and hours: Salita dè Crescenzi, 31. Open lunch and dinner Mon-Fri, lunch only Sat, and closed Sunday. Closed most of August and also over the Christmas/New Year holidays. About 40-45 Euros per person.
Outdoor seating: None
Booking: Tel: 06 6880 3034. Reservations are a must, and usually days in advance. You may have an easier time getting a booking for lunch. (A caveat: Often you can only get a booking for 7 or 7:30pm, or 9:30 pm or later. I usually prefer going for lunch for this reason.)
How to get there: While facing the pantheon, up close, with the fountain to your back, look to your right. You will see a little street with a newspaper kiosk. That is Salita dè Crecenzi. Walk about 30 feet and Armando is on your right.
This cozy trattoria is one of my absolute favorite places to eat in Rome.
I almost never come here without getting a pasta. I'm often torn between the amatriciana (above) and the tagliolini with truffles (below.)
My go-to dish here is their chicken cacciatora, made the old-fashioned way: no tomatoes, just white wine, rosemary, garlic and vinegar.
I also highly recommend their eggplant parmesan which is simply divine.
A caveat: I suggest you be prepared for the Roman way of slow service: they get very busy especially in high season, and they don't add extra staff. So you might feel ignored. Just relax and enjoy the food.
Details and hours: Via delle Colonnelle, 5. Open Tuesday - Sunday for lunch; Tuesday - Saturday for dinner. Closed Sunday night and all day Monday. About 35-40 Euros per person.
Booking: Tel 06 679 3842. Bookings are strongly recommended and a must in high season and on weekends. One nice thing about this restaurant is they do NOT engage in the 2-seating schedule. So you can book for the time you want.
Outdoor seating: There is outdoor seating but...you either sit in the covered space next to the main (very small) restaurant, which is not really outside (except people feel they can smoke, and do), or, you can sit in one of the two-top tables they put along the alley leading up to the restaurant.
How to get there: With your back to the pantheon, you will see two streets leading straight in the other direction from it. Take the one on the right, via del Pantheon. This will take you to Piazza della Maddalena. Immediately take your first right, via delle Colonnelle. You can spot Del Sostegno by the green neon sign that says simply "Trattoria."
One of the last of the truly old-fashioned restaurants near Rome pantheon, Settimio is a hidden gem. Next door to Del Sostegno (above), you'd almost walk by it if you didn't know it was there.
At Settimio, you will find a family-run place with a delicious, Roman menu...including some typical fall-winter items like game and polenta. They are also known for their pasta with white truffles (it is amazing!)
But don't worry, you can find plenty of lighter fare as well.
Sadly Settimio himself died a couple of years ago, at the age of 91. But his wife and son are still there, and the quality of the food has not changed.
Details and hours: Via delle Colonnelle, 14. Open Tuesday - Saturday for lunch and dinner. Closed Sunday and Monday. Closed in August and some days around Christmas. About 30-50 Euros per person (depending on whether you order truffles!)
Outdoor seating: None
Bookings: Phone: 06 678 9651. Reservations strongly suggested especially in high season.
How to get there: See the directions for Del Sostegno (above.) Settimio is literally next door.
Da Fortunato is a Roman classic. I'd almost insist you eat here just to have that old-world Rome experience. The restaurant has been a fixture on the local must-eat-at scene, since 1975. It is frequented by politicians, Roman elite and in-the-know long-term visitors to Rome.
The dining room is elegant, old-fashioned and spacious. The outdoor area is not that big but it's literally a stone's throw from the pantheon, without being right on the square.
The waiters, all old-school, are gracious, unobtrusive and professional.
But let's talk about the food: everything here is delicious, but it's not inexpensive. I have almost melted over their pasta with white truffles (about 45 Euros, although that is what real white truffles cost), and they specialise in fish, which, when it's good and fresh, is never cheap. Their clams/mussels sauté is only ok, but other fish dishes are divine, especially when combined with pasta. But they have plenty of meat and veggie choices also. And frankly, they are experts at real Roman cuisine like cacio e pepe (which is actually reasonably priced, as it should be.)
It's an experience to eat here, and it's special if you get to eat outside and look at the Pantheon. Just be prepared to spend a bit more.
Details and hours: Via del Pantheon 55. Open Tuesday - Sunday for lunch and dinner. On Monday, open for dinner only. About 35-45 Euros per person.
Outdoor seating: Yes and with a (partial) view of the pantheon!
Booking: Tel - 06 679 2788. Reservations strongly recommended, especially for outdoor dining.
How to get there: With your back to the pantheon, walk a little ways up the street that leads directly away from the pantheon on the right side. That is via del Pantheon.
It really does not get much more Roman than this. In fact, they only take cash (trust me that is very Roman.) But come for the food, and the friendly service. And the chaotic ambiance, and the totally kitschy décor!
This is another great spot for the basic Roman dishes like spaghetti cacio e pepe, amatriciana or carbonara. On Fridays they have classic Roman fish specialties, like oven-baked baccalà (cod) with potatoes.
You will also find old-style dishes like squid with peas, oven-baked rabbit and involtino alla romana...
... and my personal favorite - baked anchovies gratin:
This is another one of those hidden restaurants near Rome Pantheon, so you'll have to look for it.
The prices are very reasonable (probably because they don't take credit cards.)
Outdoor seating: None
Booking: Tel - 06 687 3434. An absolute must, even at lunch. Dinner reservations are for either 8pm when they open (and often they tell you you must be done by 9:30pm), or 9:30 or later.
How to get there: With your back to the pantheon, walk straight away from it, up Via del Pantheon, and continue through Piazza della Maddalena, and walk to the end of this street. At the very end, on via degli Uffici del Vicario, make a quick right and then left again on via di Campo Marzio. Walk about almost to the end, and you will see a tiny alley on your left. That's vicolo Rosini. It's about a 5 minute walk from the Pantheon.
There are a few gelato and pizza by the slice places around the Pantheon so it's not too hard to find something cheap to eat. If you are looking for quality food as low/reasonable prices, the restaurant above, Da Gino al Cavaliere also belongs in this category of cheap restaurants near Rome pantheon.
Here are some more of my favorite spots:
Enoteca di Sardegna Pigna is a tiny shop specialising in Sardinian food products. But the owner Stefano (who is Roman but loves Sardinia) also has about 3 little tables, inside or out, where you can plop down and sample some food.
And Sardinian wine! It is definitely not a restaurant, but you will get yummy, if carby and cheesy, dishes. I also wrote more about this on my lunch page.
Details: Via della Pigna, 3/3A. Open Tuesday - Sunday 10am - 8pm non-stop. Closed Mondays.
Outdoor seating: Yes, a few small wooden tables.
Booking: 06 678 9374 Not necessary, just show up.
How to get there: Facing the pantheon, walk straight ahead of you down the street on the left side of the pantheon (via dei Cestari.) Pass the plaza with Bernini's elephant (with the obelisk on top) - piazza della Minerva. Keep walking until you come to a small street on your left, via della Pigna. Take this street and you can easily spot the enoteca on the right side.
Well this is not a restaurant per se, it's a bakery.
As its name suggests, Antico Forno is one of those old-style Roman bakeries, with all the specialty and seasonal products along with the standard yummy breads, fresh savory pizzas and pastries.
One of my favourite things about it is the aroma that wafts down the street as you approach it. I always come to it while shopping along via della Stelletta, and I love when I get so close that I can actually look inside the laboratory itself.
If you want a sweet or savory carb splurge, this is the spot!
Details: Via della Scrofa 33. Open daily 8am - 8pm. No seating, take-out only.
How to get there: Facing the pantheon, very close to it, you see to your right salita dei Crescenzi. Take this short street to the end, and turn right onto Via della Dogana Vecchia. Walk a little over 100 yds/meters. The street changes name and becomes Via della Scrofa. Antico Forno della Stelletta is on the corner of via della Scrofa and via della Stelletta.
With its high ceilings, widely spaced tables and a soft warm light glowing from the stained glass on the ceiling, Casa Bleve is one of the most romantic restaurants near Rome pantheon.
Eating at Casa Bleve is a sublime experience for the gorgeous ambiance and wine options alone, but the food is also fabulous. It's a little pricey, but worth it if you want a special dinner. And they have one of the most enviable wine cellars in Rome.
Details and hours: Via del Teatro Valle, 48. Open Monday - Saturday for lunch and dinner. Closed Sundays. About 35-45 Euros per person not including wine.
Outdoor seating: None
Booking: Tel 06 686 5970
How to get there: While facing the pantheon, close up to it, make a right and walk along Salita dè Crescenzi. At the end of this very short street, turn left onto Via della Dogana Vecchia.
I love Osteria dell'Ingegno for these reasons (yes I have a list):
This is one of the best overall restaurants near Rome pantheon for ambiance, location and food, and one of the first places I recommend when someone asks me for a romantic restaurant in Rome.
Details and hours: Piazza di Pietra 45. Open daily from 10am to 1am. About 30-35 Euros per person.
Outdoor seating: They have limited outdoor seating, but add to it as demand grows during warmer weather.
Booking: Tel 06 6780662. Reservations recommended, especially for dinner, and especially if you want to eat outside.
How to get there: Facing the pantheon, look to your left. You will see the Hotel Senato. To the left of that is a street (Tazza d'Oro is on the left corner.) This is via dei Pastini. Walk down this street all the way until you come to Piazza di Pietra. You can't miss it, there is a huge ruin on the right side. Osteria dell'Ingegno is on the far left end.
If you are near the pantheon, and want a bite to eat, but maybe not a typical Roman meal, you might try some of these options for something different.
Retrobottega is one of the most innovative restaurants near Rome pantheon, if not in all of Rome. Billed as a "laboratory where food happens", the chefs cook behind a counter, visible to everyone.
You can sit at the counter and watch them while you eat (I love doing this!), or try to grab a spot at one of the tables in the room or along the wall.
A blackboard up on the wall lists and describes the food available that day. I have never had the same thing twice, and there is nothing "simple" or "plain old..." about anything here.
Details: Via della Stelletta, 4. Open Tuesday - Sunday noon to midnight. Closed Mondays.
Outdoor seating: None
Booking: Tel 06 68136310. You cannot reserve here (unless you book the back room for a 48€ tasting menu.) Best bet to avoid crowds is to come earlier than most people eat lunch or dinner, like at noon or 7pm.
How to get there: With the pantheon behind you, walk straight away from it to the next square, Piazza della Maddalena. Keep walking straight until the end. Make a small left and keep following the street around until you come to via della Stelletta. A five minute walk.
Obicà is an interesting new take on Italian food meets the sushi bar: it's a mozzarella bar!
Can you imagine going to a bar for mozzarella tastings? All laid out pretty on a plate, each variety to be savored and enjoyed?
Yes. Lots of mozzarella. This is Italy, and perhaps you can imagine there is more than one kind. There is cow's milk mozzarella, buffalo mozzarella, smoked mozzarella...and oh so many more! It's a mozzarella bonanza!
There are also some other bar-food things to eat, and even a regular menu with pasta and pizza. And there is a happy hour with complimentary little mozzarella balls...it's very cute. And, there are outside tables, sort of picnic-table style. It's definitely a fun and unusual place to eat near the pantheon. The best part is the food. It's fresh, delicious and wonderful every time!
So don't only go for the gimmick. Go and enjoy!
Details: Via dei Prefetti, 26a, corner of Piazza Firenze. Open daily from 8:30 until midnight. (You can have coffee and pastries in the morning.) Daily happy hour from 6:30pm. About 30-40 Euros per person.
Outdoor seating: They have a lovely, fairly big covered piazza, with cooling fans to boot.
Booking: Probably a good idea but not always necessary, particularly at lunch.
How to get there: About 5 minutes' walk from the pantheon. With your back to the pantheon, walk straight away from it along Via del Pantheon (or via della Rosetta.) You will come to Piazza della Maddalena. Keep walking on Via della Maddalena. Take it all the way until you come to the end of it (you will see Grom gelateria on the left.) Make a quick left (onto Via degli Uffici del Vicario), and then a quick right again and keep going on Via Metastasio. Continue until you reach Piazza di Firenze. Obikà is hard to miss!
Do you have a hankering for a burger and fries? Some spicy chicken wings? Nachos? Well, yes, even in Rome you can get these things. At least for us expats, it's nice to know once in a while you can go get some American bistro fare (I'm sure you think we eat pasta and drink wine all the time but that's not quite true. Ahem.)
They even have a Sunday brunch, complete with bagels and lox; omelettes to order, and plenty of muffins and cakes.
Details: Largo del Teatro Valle 4. Open daily from 1pm - 2am, Sundays for brunch (except in summer.) 2 for 1 special, with dj, on Tuesday evenings 7-10pm.
How to get there: Facing the pantheon, and almost underneath it, take the street on your immediate right, salita dei Crescenzi. Turn left onto Via della Dogana Vecchia. Continue straight onto Piazza di Sant'Eustachio, and keep going, almost straight, along Via del Teatro Valle. Take this street to the very end, and make a right onto Largo del Teatro Valle. Walk just a short way and look to your right. You will see The Perfect Bun set back a little bit, but it has very tall windows so should be easy to spot.
Ginger first came on the Rome scene when they opened on via Borgognona near the Spanish Steps. And the funny thing is I mostly find Italians eating there. I've said this before, but Italians often are looking for new/modern, and definitely for healthy and light things to eat, especially at lunch.
I've given address and directions to each of the above restaurants near Rome pantheon. But just in case, here is a map with all of them:
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