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01030 Calcata Vecchia VT, Italy
Abandoned in the 1960s for fear its cliffs were crumbling, Calcata, Italy was discovered by hippies and artists soon after and today, the "paese dei fricchettone," is still made up of the same "freaks." I lived in Calcata, wedged between Tuscany...
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Apulia, Italy
Staying a Villa Cappelli (www.VCVilla.com) was truly amazing. Unlike touristy places in Italy, you are totally immersed in the culture and the food. The area seems almost untouched the blight of man. The people couldn’t be nicer, the food amazing...
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Costa S. Giorgio, 2, 50125 Firenze FI, Italy
The Bardini Garden is one of Florence's best kept secrets. It was built in the 12th century as part of a large estate owned by the Mozzi family. During the 20th century it was closed for many years and only reopened in 2005 after significant...
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Via della Scala, 16, 50123 Firenze FI, Italy
This centuries-old "pharmaceutical workshop" gives visitors a chance to experience part of Florence's unique bespoke heritage. It was established by Dominican monks of the adjacent Santa Maria Novella church around 1221 and opened to the public in...
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Via Montebello, 58, 50123 Firenze FI, Italy
During my last stay in Florence, I wanted to learn more about the artisan trades, and Bruscoli was recommended to me by a local. I am so glad it was. As I walked along the Arno River on my way to the workshop, I had no idea what an extraordinary...
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Piazza Santo Spirito, 50125 Firenze FI, Italy
Walking through the Oltrarno neighborhood of Florence one night, I caught many glimpses of normal life for Florentines, from solitary people walking the dog to groups of young people crowded in restaurants, sharing laughs and evening drinks. No...
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Ripa di Porta Ticinese, 43, 20143 Milano MI, Italy
Located in the famous Navigli neighborhood in Milan, Mag is a cozy space to relax with a good cafe and brioche by day, and by night a bustling local hangout. Never short on atmosphere or great jazz soundtracks, this bar is bursting with details...
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Far from the Santa Lucia train station and the dizzying, centripetal force of San Marco, Castello is utter sanctuary within Venice. This low-key, residential neighborhood modestly presented me with its quiet treasures: Isola San Pietro (with a...
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Piazza Santo Spirito, 9, 50125 Firenze FI, Italy
Once home to the Medici princes, Palazzo Pitti is now our portal to Renaissance Florence. It is divided into six sections and, after three visits, I still cannot choose a favorite. The left wing is comprised of the Royal Apartments—a section that...
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Via Scipione Petrarolo, 7, 72017 Ostuni BR, Italy
Located in the hilltop town of Ostuni, this small boutique hotel has stunning views of the valley and coast below and a wonderful aperitif-tasting menu. From $173. This appeared in the Nov/Dec 2015 issue.
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Contrada Coccaro, 72015 Fasano BR, Italy
Masseria Torre Maizza and its sister resort Masseria Torre Coccaro near Monopoli feature lovely spas, broad terraces for a sunset aperitif, fortified towers from the 15th century surrounded by olive groves, and restaurants on the beach. From $321....
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Via Villa Castelli, 74015 Martina Franca TA, Italy
Not far from the historical town of Martina Franca, Fumarola’s 14 suites, each with unique interior designs, are built from trulli, traditional Apulian drystone huts with conical roofs. The property is owned and managed by an aristocratic family...
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SP358, 14, 73028 Otranto LE, Italy
A luxury masseria (manor farm) near the southern town of Otranto, Montelauro was originally built in 1878. Its 29 rooms, many with vaulted stone ceilings, look out onto a central garden and swimming pool or command views of the countryside....
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Piazza Amati, 1, 72015 Fasano BR, Italy
Be sure to order a bottle of white Sale wine to accompany the seafood crudo in this little glass box of a restaurant right by the sea. This appeared in the Nov/Dec 2015 issue.
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Via Guglielmo Paladini, 2, 73100 Lecce LE, Italy
Have a long, relaxed lunch of salad, pizza, or sandwiches—featuring excellent cured meats and cheeses—in a beautiful outdoor seating area right next to the Cathedral of Lecce. With dessert have a traditional iced coffee with almond milk.
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Via Ascanio Grandi, 56, 73100 Lecce LE, Italy
In his small private archaeological museum, Luciano Faggiano displays artifacts from multiple layers of Lecce’s history— Messapian, Roman, medieval, Byzantine—that he discovered digging beneath the floor of what he once hoped would become his...
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Via Roma, 40, 73020 Santa Cesarea Terme LE, Italy
In the small coastal town of Santa Cesarea Terme, partake of the thermal sulfuric waters and various other wellness treatments, such as massage and respiratory therapy, in an updated classic 19th-century spa. For something more brisk, plunge into...
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Puerto Ayora, Ecuador
Expeditions are hard work (sometimes), and require attention, dedication, and focus. After a long day exploring the islands, the Finch Bay Eco Hotel on Santa Cruz is the perfect place to unwind. I took a cocktail to the pool, dipped my toes in the...
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Piazza del Duomo, 50122 Firenze FI, Italy
The cathedral, usually called the Duomo, is Florence’s most recognizable building. You are able to catch glimpses of its magnificent red-tiled cupola from just about anywhere in the city center. Construction on the church...
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Via Ricasoli, 58/60, 50122 Firenze FI, Italy
Most people head to this ex-art school to ogle the world’s most famous nude statue. Michelangelo’s David was carved from a single five-meter-high block of milky-white marble in 1504 and originally stood in Piazza della Signoria....
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Piazza del Mercato Nuovo, 50123 Firenze FI, Italy
When you visit the area of the Piazza della Signoria and Piazza della Republica in Florence, don't miss this interesting attraction. From Piazza della Signoria, walk towards Piazza della Republica, and on the left side, you'll see Piazza del...
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Via di Santo Spirito, 64, 50125 Firenze FI, Italy
This busy, buzzy Oltrarno restaurant continues to be a personal favorite for its lively atmosphere and dependable cooking at reasonable prices. The menu offers ever-present favorites such as pasta with sweet tropea onions and cherry tomatoes as...
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Piazza della Signoria, 50122 Firenze FI, Italy
Just off the main square, Piazza della Signoria, in Florence, this open air museum was beautiful in the morning as light spilled down and over the statues and general gorgeousness that is Florence. Walking through Florence was so different to...
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Lungarno degli Archibusieri, 8, 50122 Firenze FI, Italy
There are few better places from which to enjoy river views and sunsets than the Ponte Vecchio, built in 1345. Spanning the Arno's narrowest point, this is the only bridge to have survived the German bombing of the city in 1944. There have always...
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Piazza della Repubblica, 50123 Firenze FI, Italy
The Piazza Della Repubblica was the place to be in Florence in the evenings. Tourists and locals alike dined at the restaurants lining the square, student groups gathered, families enjoyed the Carousel, and gypsies and other migrants tried to sell...
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Via Lambertesca, 18/r, 50122 Firenze FI, Italy
You can’t visit Florence without indulging in ice cream once at the very least, but it’s not so easy to find the real deal. Carapina, gelateria of choice for cognoscenti (but often overlooked by tourists), is located a stone’s throw from the Ponte...
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Via Santa Monaca, 3r, 50124 Firenze FI, Italy
Know locally as S'forno, this vintage-look Santo Spirito bakery sells a fantastic selection of sweet and savoury goods and is one of the few 'panifici' in Florence to still have an on-site oven (most do their baking outside the city). The bread...
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Piazza dei Rossi, 1R, 50125 Firenze FI, Italy
Tucked away in a tiny piazzetta just off the main Ponte Vecchio–Palazzo Pitti tourist drag, this bright, modern squeeze of a wine bar specializes in wines by small, lesser-known producers from all over Italy. Tempting snacks include fabulous...
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Venice, Metropolitan City of Venice, Italy
I had been skeptical of the Venetian gondola ride, thinking it too touristy and overpriced. Last summer, however, I discovered what is so special about this Venetian tradition. A gondola ride provides a unique view of Venice from the quiet...
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Sant'Elena, 30100 Venice, Metropolitan City of Venice, Italy
One of the best strolls through Venice begins in the neighborhood of Arsenale and finishes on the Island of Sant'Elena. Walk along the main drag of Via Giuseppe Garibaldi, a street full of shops and colourful local life until it dead ends. Make a...
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Calle Lion, 3383, 30121 Venezia VE, Italy
We spent the day walking around Venice and getting lost in its wonderful maze of streets. The end of the day found us facing this large church as the cat-in-the-cradle moon hung low in the sky. Randy went onto the bridge for a better view and...
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Calle degli Albanesi, 4250, 30122 Venezia VE, Italy
It's like the Venetians knew we'd end up lost and hungry. This mosaic placard (a tradition that dates to the Roman period) pointed us in the direction, and we wound up at a restaurant—Taverna dei Dogi, which has a relaxed atmosphere, and...
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Piazza San Marco, 328, 30100 Venezia VE, Italy
The Basilica San Marco is Venice's crown jewel. Situated at the eastern end of Piazza San Marco, the cathedral was built around 1078 on the site of an earlier house of worship. It is famously the home of the remains of the apostle Mark, which were...
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Venice, Metropolitan City of Venice, Italy
The Grand Canal is the no-brainer must-do Venice experience, and the best way to explore the city's main thoroughfare is on a vaporetto, or water bus. For a great introduction to the area, ride the vaporetto from the railway station, at the edge...
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Rio Terà de le Carampane, 1911, 30125 Venezia VE, Italy
If you're looking for some of the most authentic and delicious seafood in Venice, pay a visit to Antiche Carampane. Located in an unassuming building a few minutes' walk from the Rialto Bridge, this trattoria is where the locals eat when they're...
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30100 Venice, Metropolitan City of Venice, Italy
While exploring Burano, break for a fabulous seafood lunch at Al Gato Nero. The "black cat" restaurant is the creation of Ruggero Bovo, who has been cooking up some of the tastiest fresh fish and seafood here since 1965. "I love the fish of the...
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Via Lago di Lesina, 9/11, 00199 Roma RM, Italy
A few blocks from Villa Ada and the Via Salaria, Gelateria Fatamorgana sells Maria Agnese Spagnuolo’s edible works of art. Each flavor is made from all natural ingredients, without chemical additives or artificial flavors, and many are lactose...
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Piazza degli Zingari, 4, 00184 Roma RM, Italy
A 10-minute walk from the Forum, Gelateria Fatamorgana sells Maria Spagnuolo’s edible works of art. Each flavor is made from all natural ingredients, without chemical additives or artificial flavors, and many are lactose free. Spagnuolo’s...
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Rome, Metropolitan City of Rome, Italy
In June 2012, Marco Radicioni, an alum of gelato master Claudio Torcè, opened Otaleg in the Portuense district (southwestern Rome). After more than a year of study with the maestro, Radicioni he opened his own space. The name is simply “gelato”...
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Rome, Metropolitan City of Rome, Italy
If there is one person responsible for the relatively recent improvement of Rome’s gelato culture, it is Claudio Torcè. He has trained some of Rome’s premier gelatai (Maria Spagnuolo of Fatamorgana and the Gori siblings, to name a few) and prides...
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Via Luigi Poletti, 6, 00196 Roma RM, Italy
This tiny natural gelato shop opened behind the Maxxi (the Zaha Hadid-designed museum for 21st century art) to rave reviews in the summer of 2011. The gelataio uses Italy’s best hazelnuts and pistachios, Amedei chocolate, milk from a biodynamic...
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Via della Lungaretta, 96, 00153 Roma RM, Italy
Fair trade and high quality ingredients make this one of the best gelaterie in the center of town. They serve a delicious peanut butter gelato, inspired by requests from the American college students who study nearby. In the winter, Fior di Luna...
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Piazza Menenio Agrippa, 8B/C, 00141 Roma RM, Italy
The Gori siblings studied the art of gelato making with the master Claudio Torcè of Il Gelato and have brought his approach to natural, creative, quality production to their own shop in Montesacro. Try unusual flavors like buckwheat, whortleberry,...
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Via Laurina, 10, 00187 Roma RM, Italy
Take a break from shopping or strolling between the Spanish Steps and Piazza del Popolo to try some of Rome (therefore the world's) best artisanal gelato made with all-natural ingredients. Many flavors are seasonal, but you will always find a...
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Via dei Chiavari, 37, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
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Via Guidoni, 19018 Vernazza SP, Italy
Any meal served in an eleventh century castle overlooking the sea has to be good. But dinner at Belforte in Vernazza (Cinque Terre) is an experience to be rivaled by few others. Daniele can tell you about the most recent catch, the housemade...
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19018 Vernazza, SP, Italy
The five villages that make up Cinque Terre on the Italian Ligurian coast are some of the most picturesque in the world -- and totally worth the hike! Grab your shoes and take a water bottle in the heat of the summer -- and make sure to visit the...
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19016 Monterosso al Mare, SP, Italy
A few times a year, join hang-gliders from around the world as they soar over the breathtaking vistas of the Cinque Terra section of the Ligurian coast! Fly over abandoned World War 2 bunkers, weaving cobblestone village streets, and gorgeous...
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19016 Monterosso al Mare, SP, Italy
If you think you've reached the end of Monterosso Al Mare after passing the last boardwalk gelateria, you're sorely mistaken. Just keep going --- and find this massive Atlas carved into the rock outcropping at the end of the beach! If you are...
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Piazza Rio Finale, 8, 19017 Riomaggiore SP, Italy
One of the highlights of my trip to Italy was walking Cinque Terre. I would travel back to Italy just to do this walk again. My favorite part was the Via dell'Amore, or Walk of Love that went from Riomaggiore to Manarola. This is a picture of one...
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Via Renato Birolli, 92, 19017 Manarola SP, Italy
While Vernazza and Monteroso were nearly devastated by the floods and mudslides of October 2011, Manarola luckily fared much better. Only now nearly back to normal, the villages welcome visitors to enjoy the bounty of her waters --- especially...
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Riomaggiore SP, Italy
Made from chickpea (ceci) flour, olive oil, water, and salt, this delicious 'flat bread' is a specialty of the entire Ligurian coast. Find these warm breads topped with rosemary, garlic, and/or other more traditional pizza toppings. Enjoy straight...
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19017 Riomaggiore SP, Italy
Sometimes it's nice to get off the beaten path. You can take the normal pathways around Cinque Terre (and they are spectacular in their own right) but you can also veer a bit off the normal journey and take the 'high road' to catch a glimpse of...
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Parco nazionale delle Cinque Terre, 19016 Monterosso al Mare SP, Italy
Climbing the Sentiero Azzurro (or the Blue Path, given the gorgeous ocean views you get from almost every bend) you traipse by countless terraced vineyards producing the Vermentino and Sciacchetrà that this region is so famous for. And keep your...
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Viale delle Terme di Caracalla, 00153 Roma RM, Italy
The Baths of Caracalla, a third century bathing complex located near the Circus Maximus, was the center of social life for tens of thousands of Romans who would gather there—around 10,000 at a time—to exercise, bathe, and relax. Admission was...
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Via del Caravita, 8a, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
While a lot of people would go see the Sistine Chapel when visiting Rome, fewer travelers venture out to this grand church at the Piazza di San Ignacio near the Pantheon, which features an almost equally beautiful painted ceiling done by Andrea...
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Viale della Marina, 40-42, 00122 Lido di Ostia RM, Italy
According to legend, Rome’s first orange tree—St. Dominic’s gift to the pope—was planted in Giardino degli Aranci (Garden of the Oranges) in the 13th century. The secluded park provides a panoramic view of the city, from...
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Piazza della Minerva, 42, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
Just behind the Pantheon hides the church of Santa Maria Sopra Minerva, a gem in its own right. The only Gothic church in Rome's center, it's a breath of fresh air from over-the-top Baroque opulence. Plus, it has gorgeous frescoes by Filippo Lippi...
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Via Caio Cestio, 6, 00153 Roma RM, Italy
One of our family favorite activities on a Sunday afternoon in Rome is a wander in the Non-Catholic Cemetery in Testaccio. We particularly love it in winter. I know, it is more picturesque and colorful in the spring and early summer, but even on...
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Largo di Villa Peretti, 2, 00185 Roma RM, Italy
If one single space encapsulates the Roman Empire, it would be Palazzo Massimo, Rome’s multilevel museum housing one of Italy’s richest collections of antiquities. The entire history of Rome, from the rise of the Republic to its...
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Piazzale Napoleone I, 00197 Roma RM, Italy
Encompassing early 200 acres of rolling parkland, Villa Borghese is Rome's verdant heart and everyone's favorite place for an afternoon walk. The vast gardens are criss-crossed with picturesque paths, where visitors can meander past ancient...
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Piazza di S. Luigi de' Francesi, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
In 1589, the Church of San Luigi dei Francesi became the official church of Rome’s French community, and with true Bourbon flair, the church's decorations are a celebration of France's power and wealth, with gilded stucco, lavish...
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Via Ostiense, 106, 00154 Roma RM, Italy
Tired of the crowds? Go to the Centrale Montemartini in Ostiense. No lines. In fact, no other people. At all. Usually I am the only one there. Wander the ancient Roman sculptures and extraordinary mosaic floor set in the former power plant;...
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Quartiere Coppedé is an unexpected and bizarre area in Rome developed by architect Gino Coppedè (1866-1927). A collection of about fifteen buildings, which are closest to Art Nouveau in style, it post dates Art Nouveau by 10-20 years. Near Viale...
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Via Lemonia, 221, 00174 Roma RM, Italy
Cycling through Aqueduct park in Rome
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Via della Caffarella, Roma RM, Italy
The Parco della Caffarella is part of the larger Parco Regionale dell'Appia Antica, a vast public park that is protected from development. Just a short walk from the city center, and flanked by a dense neighborhood, the Parco della Caffarella...
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Viale della Moschea, 85, 00199 Roma RM, Italy
Whenever I travel, I always try to seek out local mosques. There are spectacular odes to marble and calligraphy across the "Muslim" world and far beyond, ranging from the mammoth Hassan II mosque in Casablanca to a charming sea-green confection in...
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A vast network of ancient aqueducts converged on the center of Rome to provide water to 1 million residents and their public fountains and baths during the Empire. Today, the ruins of these imperial structures have been transformed into houses,...
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Piazza Giovanni Agnelli, 10, 00144 Roma RM, Italy
The Museo Della Civiltà Romana (Museum of Roman Civilization) is a fascinating destination. Made up largely of replicas of Roman artwork and scale models of Roman buildings (including an impressive scale model of the city of Rome as it appeared...
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Via di Santa Prassede, 9, 00184 Roma RM, Italy
The 8th century Saint Zeno Chapel in the Church of Santa Prassede was built by Pope Paschal to serve as a funeral chapel for his mother Theodora. The Pope employed talented artisans to bedazzle the chapel in gold and glass mosaics, which can still...
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Piazza della Bocca della Verità, 18, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
Most visitors to Piazza Bocca della Verità are enticed by the so-called Mouth of Truth, an ancient drain cover anchored to a wall inside the portico of the Church of Santa Maria in Cosmedin. The Mouth of Truth features a carved face with a gaping...
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Lungotevere dei Mellini, 35, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
The Altar of Peace, also known by its ancient name, Ara Pacis, is a 1st century BC monument embellished with marble reliefs. The structure's carved stone surfaces depict religious processions and allegories, all of which glorify the family and...
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Via Ostiense, 106, 00154 Roma RM, Italy
The 3rd century Aurelian Walls stretched for 12 miles around the city. Measuring a distance of 12 miles in circumference, the defensive circuit is Rome's largest ancient building. There a dozen gateways in the wall, each of which provided access...
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Via Nazionale, 194, 00184 Roma RM, Italy
Mussolini developed this residential and business district in southern Rome in the 1930s and 1940s for a pair of propagandistic motives. The first was to host the 1942 world's fair called the Esposizione Universale di Roma (abbreviated EUR), while...
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Piazza di Santa Maria in Trastevere, 00153 Roma RM, Italy
Many believe the Basilica di Santa Maria was the first church built in Rome. While archaeologists can't definitively corroborate this claim, this landmark remains of supreme importance to locals who come to worship beneath its gilded ceiling. The...
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Piazza di San Pietro in Vincoli, 4/a, 00184 Roma RM, Italy
When Pope Julius II envisioned his tomb more than 500 years ago, he commissioned Michelangelo to build a monumental structure featuring dozens of marble sculptures. The over-the-top mausoleum was meant to stand in St Peter's Basilica, but plans...
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Via di Villa Giulia, 9, 00196 Roma RM, Italy
Though the Borghese Gallery is the best known museum in the Villa Borghese, there are a number of others, including the Museo Nazionale Etrusco di Villa Giulia, home to one of the world's most expansive collection of Etruscan relics. The building...
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Via Catalana, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
The history of Jews in Rome is an ancient and complex study spanning nearly twenty-two centuries. The community—today there are around 13,000 members—is a small but important facet of the city’s cultural fabric and, though you often have to go on...
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00060 Capena RM, Italy
The original settlement of Capena was founded on the site nowadays known as La Civitucola, some three kilometres north of present-day Capena. Ancient Capena was a thriving town, situated close to the Tiber river and the sanctuary and commercial...
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Campo San Giacometto, 122, 30125 Rialto, Venezia VE, Italy

At the foot of the Rialto Bridge with fantastic views of the Grand Canal, Osteria Bancogiro sits under the archway of the Bancogiro (a bank founded in 1600) from which the tavern gets its name. Here, you'll find a ground-floor wine bar serving...

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The Milan Cathedral, or Duomo, occupies a site that’s been holy since the time of the Romans, but it wasn’t until the early 19th century when the finishing touches were finally placed on this massive building. The Duomo is the fifth largest...
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When it comes to ice cream, there is still only one place in Rome. It has been the best since 1900. I love Giolitti not only for the great gelato, but also because it hasn’t changed since I was a little girl. 39/06-699-1243. By Pepi Marchetti...
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Vicolo delle Bollette, 13, 00187 Roma RM, Italy
Here is one of Rome’s best restaurants: Al Moro is very traditional and is well known for the quality of its seasonal ingredients, including porcini mushrooms, wild strawberries, artichokes, and asparagus. 39/06-678-3495. By Pepi Marchetti...
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Via Borgognona, 11, 00187 Roma RM, Italy
I often take out-of-town guests here for lunch because it feels—and is—so authentic. Whenever I go in, I have ‘my’ table, as do all the other Roman regulars. One of the restaurant’s specialties is the Francovich soup, which is a delicious Tuscan...
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Alzaia Naviglio Pavese, 286, 20142 Milano MI, Italy
The café Erba Brusca sits on a plot of land at the city’s edge, where concrete blocks meet grassy meadows. Italian staples such as buttery white polenta and roasted speziata sausage are made with herbs and greens grown on-site. Reserve a table on...
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Via Pignasecca, 80134 Napoli NA, Italy
La Pignasecca is renowned for its abundance of cheese, pastry, and fresh fish stalls. As you shop, don’t miss snacking on the biscuits (tarrale) from Panificio Vincenzo Coppola. Open daily, Via Pignasecca. Read Tom Downey's "Tailor Made in Naples...
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74, Via di S. Teodoro, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
Every Saturday and Sunday on Via S. Teodoro, tucked just off Circus Maximus, Rome's best farmer's market takes place. It's run by Campagna Amica, an Italy-wide organization that promotes local, sustainable agriculture—so all of the products sold...
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Galleria del Corso, 4, 20122 Milano MI, Italy
For the last decade, Peck was the only place in town to stock up on the best of the best Italian foodstuffs. Now there’s a new gourmet go-to: a sprawling emporium in the basement level of the Excelsior department store. Choose from thousands of...
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Via Pardo, 29, 95131 Catania CT, Italy
Make a meal of fresh sea urchin at Osteria Antica Marina among the bustle of the fishmongers in Catania. This appeared in the August/September 2013 issue. Image courtesy of Osteria Antica Marina
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Via Stella, 22, 41121 Modena MO, Italy
In the region of Emilia-Romagna, eat at Massimo Bottura’s three-Michelin-star Osteria Francescana. From there, take a day trip to Massimo Spigaroli’s farm estate, Antica Corte Pallavicina; visit his charcuterie, and buy some culatello [a prized...
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Viale Cavalleggeri D'Aosta, 84, 80124 Napoli NA, Italy

Pescheria Mattiucci is a fish store by day that transforms itself into a small standing-room-only restaurant a few nights of the week. Mattiucci is an old family operation, but this place is the brainchild of a young son, Luigi Mattiucci. Luigi...

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Via Ponte Vetero, 21, 20121 Milano MI, Italy
Every city has an eatery that’s a mainstay for shoppers, and in Milan, it’s the tony Brera neighborhood restaurant Convivium. House specialties include complimentary rosemary flatbread, four-cheese pizza, and sea saltencrusted sea bass for two. ...
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Borgo S. Frediano, 167R, 50124 Firenze FI, Italy
IO Osteria Personale is a small, elegant, and innovative restaurant in Florence. It's a foodie's delight, with an à la carte menu of meat, seafood, and vegetarian dishes, but no pasta! You can choose three or five dishes plus dessert to create...
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93100 Caltanissetta, Province of Caltanissetta, Italy
by Fabrizia Lanza A restaurant built within Palermo’s ancient walls, where chariots were once housed. Under these enormous vaults there is a library, a garden, and a bar—it’s a fantastic place for drinks. Foro Umberto I This story appeared in the...
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Southern Europe
by Fabrizia Lanza People line up at seven or eight in the morning to order a big dish of soup made with tripe and intestines. You can getpanelle(pancakes made from chickpeas) hot from the vendor. They also sell the most famouspanino—spleen stuffed...
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Via Dante, 40, 34071 Cormons GO, Italy
D’Osvaldo is one of the only remaining producers of the smoked ham known as prosciutto di Cormòns, a local specialty. Visit the smoking room behind the family estate, where legs of prosciutto hang above smoldering cherry wood gathered from the...
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Riviera di Chiaia, 269, 80121 Napoli NA, Italy
Antonella Rossi and her husband, Corrado, offer seasonal locavore takes on traditional Neapolitan fare such as green zucchini with squid sauteed in olive oil with lavender. 39/081-552-2266. Read Tom Downey's "Tailor Made in Naples."
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Bastioni Marco Polo, 41, 07041 Alghero SS, Italy
Located near farm and sea, the northwest city of Alghero is the place to try regional specialties. The restaurant Angedras expresses the city’s Catalan influences with local ingredients; try the mussel-and-clam soup, or the grilled pecorino...
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Via delle Belle Arti, 17/A, 40126 Bologna BO, Italy
Bologna is well known for its culinary expertise, and one of the best restaurants in town to taste authentic Bolognese cuisine is at the Trattoria Anna Maria. This little restaurant serves only the best food from the Emilia-Romagna region of...
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Via Baldassarre Galuppi, 221, 30142 Burano,Venezia VE, Italy
Let the wind blow through your hair as you take a 30-minute vaporetto ride to Burano, an island in the lagoons of Venice. Known for its brightly-colored fishermen's homes, the island is largely free of the tourist crush of the rest of Venice....
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Via dei Giubbonari, 21/22, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
The Roscioli family, famous for their nearby bakery Antico Forno Roscioli, opened this restaurant/wine bar/gourmet shop in 2005. Book several days in advance for lunch or dinner and be sure to request a ground floor table near the back of the...
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Via Ombrone, 1, 05018 Orvieto TR, Italy
Where's the beef? Who cares - when you come to Orvieto the thing to eat is "porchetta" and they do it in so many different ways that you'll just have to try them all. Either hit a restaurant or just go to one of the butcher shops and try a bit of...
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Via dell'Opio Nel Corso, 34, 53045 Montepulciano SI, Italy
[CLOSED] A Gambe di Gatto is a tiny restaurant in Montepulciano, Tuscany, Italy with fabulous food. The service is very slow as it just a husband and wife team. Laura cooks, Emanuel serves. Using only local products, mostly organic, they do a...
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Tucked in an alley near the historic downtown you'll find this small restaurant serving traditional, regional dishes (at a great price especially for the area). With open-air courtyard seating surrounded by vines, it makes for a relaxing lunch....
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Piazza Santo Spirito, 16/R, 50125 Firenze FI, Italy
I love Florence: it's one of my favorite cities in Italy and in the world. But, the downside is that it can get ridiculously crowded. In fact, the last time I visited it was so crowded on the 'main side' of Florence, where the Duomo and all of the...
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07041 Alghero, Province of Sassari, Italy
Al Tuguri, in Alghero’s old town, specializes in Sardinian dishes like costolette di agnello ai finocchietti selvatici, local lamb ribs with wild fennel.Via Maiorca 113, Alghero, 39/(0) 79-976-772, altuguri.it
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Via della Chiesa, 16/r, 50125 Firenze FI, Italy
This authentic neighborhood bar, Il Chicco di Caffè (aka Lola’s), is run by Maurizio whose Mom, Lola, cooks for a truly egalitarian mix of local artisans, staff from the nearby Gucci headquarters, students and people like me (I live next door!) at...
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Fondamenta Nani, 992, 30123 Dorsoduro, Venezia VE, Italy
If you are in Venice, you will surely get familiar with local spritz (a fizzy, refreshing aperitif) and cicchetti, or small snacks. If you want to have a local experience, be sure to stop by Cantine del Vino Già Schiavi while walking around La...
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Via Roma, 54, 19016 Monterosso al Mare SP, Italy
Having just spent the better part of 12 days eating nothing but focaccia, pasta, more focaccia and more pasta in Tuscany, this heaping helping of "frutti di mare" for my first meal in Cinque Terre was absolute heaven. With the exception of a small...
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Via Cristoforo Colombo, 30, 84017 Positano SA, Italy
Built into Positano’s hillside, with an eye-catching crimson facade laced with white trimming, Le Sirenuse sits amid the town’s tangle of pastel houses and stepped alleys that lead to charming boutiques, restaurants, art galleries, and...
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Chef Marcello Trentini is innovative, intent on correcting perceptions that the cuisine of Italy's Piedmont region is heavy and old-fashioned. His combinations of sweet and savory, meat and seafood, and textures smooth and crunchy serve his...
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They don't call this northern Italian city "Bologna the Fat" for nothing. I recently ate my way through this arcaded city, sampling the city's namesake pasta sauce--Bolognese (about which an article will be coming to the pages of AFAR someday...
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The multi-generational kosher bakery on the Jewish Ghetto's main street sells Roman Jewish classics like ricotta cake, cinnamon-almond biscotti, roasted pumpkin seeds and pizza ebraica. The latter, which translates to "Jewish pizza", is a dense,...
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Via Fratelli Bonnet, 5, 00152 Roma RM, Italy
A popular wine bar in Rome’s Monteverde area, Litro is as famous for its clientele's Instagram snaps as its rich wine listings. For those hunters of natural and biodynamic wines, Litro is the place: You can choose from many small and...
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Rome, Metropolitan City of Rome, Italy
In Rome, modern pastries are at their most compelling when firmly rooted in local flavors. At his eponymous pastry shop, Andrea De Bellis riffs on the classics without straying too far from tradition. Among his specialties is the typical trattoria...
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Via dello Statuto, 60, 00185 Roma RM, Italy
Maritozzi, Rome’s old school yeasted buns, were once ubiquitous breakfast pastries. But as times changed, so did the menu, and now only a handful of places spotlight this disappearing classic. Century-old Pasticceria Regoli and newly opened Caffè...
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Mercato Centrale, 50123 Firenze FI, Italy
Located on the first floor of the bustling central market, Nerbone’s food stall has been serving up steaming plates of warming nourishment to hungry market workers since 1872 and is a great place to find local color and rock-bottom prices. The...
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Via Andrea del Verrocchio, 8r, 50122 Firenze FI, Italy
Cibreo is one of Florence’s top gourmet restaurants, but if you manage to get a table in the adjoining, much less formal trattoria (you can’t book and there’s always a line), you eat the same food at a fraction of the price. Chef Fabio Picchi’s...
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Via dei Michelozzi, 9/R, 50125 Firenze FI, Italy
In spite of featuring in all the guide books, this Santo Spirito favourite has a loyal local following, and the place is always packed out with a mix of tourists and Florentines who line up for good value, homecooked food. I would recommend...
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Via dei Georgofili, 3r/7r, 50122 Firenze FI, Italy
A useful address for a snack after a visit to the Uffizi or Palazzo Vecchio, this gourmet sandwich bar and deli, hidden away down a narrow lane, serves delicious panini plus the odd salad. The sandwich selection (made with focaccia freshly-baked...
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Florence is famous for many reasons: the Duomo, the David, the whole Renaissance thing.... Sure, these are great—but the pizza. Oh man, the pizza! I'm talking about a thin, doughy crust, fresh ingredients, and a flavor you can barely handle. I'm...
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Via dei Neri, 37/r, 50124 Firenze FI, Italy
If you can't stand the thought of another plate of ribollita (and it happens to the best of us), this contemporary dim sum restaurant is a good place to come for a cheap lunch: 12 euros will buy you two courses plus unlimited tea and water. The...
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Via dei Neri, 74/R, 50100 Firenze FI, Italy
Fresh as you can get and a great price. The baker was bringing in steaming loaves of oven-fresh bread from the bakery down the street while we were standing in line!! Prosciutto on focaccia with warm Parmesan spread and arugula was delicious....
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Piazza San Felice, 8r, 50125 Firenze FI, Italy
Rosticcerias normally just offer cooked food-to-go, but this one is also has a basic restaurant space at the back, so you can choose what looks good from the hot food counter and grab a table at the back. The spit-roast chicken with roast potatoes...
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Via di Camaldoli, 2r, 50124 Firenze FI, Italy
This natural soup-n-burger joint lies far from the tourist hordes, on a quiet residential street in the San Frediano neighbourhood. The kitchen and takeaway operation (open lunch and dinner) stands on one side of the road while opposite there is a...
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Florence, Metropolitan City of Florence, Italy
Really good, authentic ethnic food is hard to come by in Florence, so it's worth making a little effort to seek out this off-radar newcomer in the east of the city. Stylish, wood-lined Cucina16 is mainly a popular lunch-spot offering traditional...
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Via Federico Ozanam, 30-32, 00152 Roma RM, Italy
Monteverde's vibrant pizzeria and trattoria is an enclave of local flavor—from its excellent menu of fritti (fried starters), sfizi (delicious antipasti), and pizzas to its busy clientele. Owner Giancarlo Casa is a pizza perfectionist, and...
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Via Giuseppe Lunati, 25/31, 00149 Roma RM, Italy
Excellent dough and creative toppings make La Fucina one of Rome's premier pizzerias. Pizzas are served to the table pre-sliced and one at a time (don’t even think about asking for them all at once, you’ll get an earful from owner Edoardo Papa!),...
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Via Valle Corteno, 31, 00141 Roma RM, Italy
Opened in the summer of 2011, Tonda quickly became the hottest pizzeria in town. The place serves thick-rimmed Neapolitan style pizza (like at Sforno) and trapizzini (like at Trapizzino). The owners are the same for all three renowned pizzerias....
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Piazza Campo de' Fiori, 22, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
This historic bakery in Campo de' Fiori serves good pizza bianca and excellent pizza rossa, as well as assorted slices, cookies, and pastries. The neighboring annex across the alley (Vicolo del Gallo 14) serves sandwiches and baked goods. Drop in...
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Via dei Chiavari, 34, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
One of Rome's best bakeries and among the city's most historic institutions, Antico Forno Roscioli is a family-run business. Depending on the time of day, you might find patriarch Marco or his son Pierluigi hard at work. There are a variety of...
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Via degli Scipioni, 248, 00192 Roma RM, Italy
La Pratolina, a pizzeria in Prati that is open for dinner only, serves some of the best fritti (fried starters) in town. I dare say the sfizi (mixed croquette plates) are worth a trip alone. But you should stay for the pizza—or as they call it...
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116, Via Statilio Ottato, 110, 00175 Roma RM, Italy
Excellent fried starters, delectable pizzas, and a large selection of craft beers make this one of Rome's best pizzerias. The style is Neapolitan with a high rim, as opposed to the thin crusted Roman style. The Greenwich (stilton and port...
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Piazza di Santa Maria Liberatrice, 44, 00153 Roma RM, Italy
Arrive at this classic Roman pizzeria before 8pm or be prepared to queue for its scrocchiarella (crispy thin crust) Roman style pizza. Start with a few fritti (fried starters) and a plate of beans, the traditional starters to Roman pizza meals....
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Via dei Santi Quattro, 24, 00184 Roma RM, Italy
This busy pizzeria in the Celio, the neighborhood adjacent to the Colosseum, is decked out in kitschy Roman decor. The dining room resembles a piazza of sorts, surrounded by old school storefronts anchored to the walls. Six nights a week, Li Rioni...
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Via della Meloria, 43, 00136 Roma RM, Italy
Gabriele Bonci's famous pizza-by-the-slice joint serves some of the best pizza in town. The slow-leavened dough is made from organic stoneground flour, and toppings change throughout the day. Pizzarium also sells excellent bread and supplì (fried...
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Via del Monte della Farina, 28, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
At Pizzeria Emma in central Rome, siblings Francesco and Ilaria Roscino have teamed up with gourmet gurus the Roscioli brothers to open Emma. There are deceptively light fried starters like rice croquettes, mozzarella-filled squash blossoms, and...