New Year in Rome

Discussion in 'Blogs' started by Lykke TheNun, Jan 11, 2011.

  1. Lykke TheNun

    Lykke TheNun Lootius bless you all!

    We went to Rome as planned, for New Year and a few extra days. Thanks to a fellow Entropian, Ron Kovich, whose mom has Hotel Sweet Holiday Rome, we were able to live cozy in the center of the city. The hotel is located a few minutes' walk from the Vatican City, castle, and only half an hour away from some of the nicest attractions in Rome.

    Rome from the top of Castle Sant' Angelo with the St. Peters in the back

    We planned to see so much, but walking around was more energy taking than we imagine. First of all though, we wanted to find the best Italian restaurant to celebrate New Year's Evening, because we failed to find anything suitable online. The hotel's limo driver, Alfredo, picked us up at the air port and we quickly talked about everything - and of course about Rome and our concerns. He said he often visits a place with friends and family, and that we should try it out. So he handed us a business card for Restaurant Pierluigi.

    Already the day after arrival we walked the way to Campo De Fiori, first passing Castel Sant Angelo, and then passing the River Tiber. We ended up in some little roads with hardly any people, and we really felt we found the secret place in Rome. There are a lot of art stores - small, narrow antiquity shops filled with beautiful [FONT=&quot]nostalgic [/FONT]but also a lot of kitsch.

    When we arrived to the restaurant it was closed. But a waiter saw us and told us they would open up in 45 min. so we decided to find a bar for a cup of coffee. Further down the street we found a bar. A bar in Italy /Rome, is different from a bar in Denmark (or anywhere else, I assume). It's a more a caf than an actual bar, but they have it mixed up as both a caf, sometimes a small restaurant, often a real 'bar' where you can grab a Beer or a glass of wine - and at the same time buy cigarettes, chocolate, cake and [FONT=&quot]groceries [/FONT]to bring home. Seeing Italian people drinking Beer and Wine during day is rare though. It is fun how they obviously need their daily cup of [FONT=&quot]caffeine[/FONT], [FONT=&quot]Espresso[/FONT], which is a very concentrated, strong cup of coffee. We find it weird that they just hurried into the Bar, and then out again few minutes later. Then again, the [FONT=&quot]Espresso [/FONT]is one sip only, and then it's gone. Even their 'normal' coffee is strong. I went mostly for Coffee Americano, which is a more close to what I use to drink kind of coffee.

    A typical cozy narrow street in Rome

    We did go to one of Rome's most famous Coffee caf's. Some say they make Rome's best coffee there. It's called Caff S. Eustracchio, which is placed on Piazza Sant' Eustacchio, and was formed in 1938. This contention might be overruled by their competitor on the other side of the street on Via degli Orfani, Caff Tazza d'Oro, we didn't try the last one, but we waited half an hour for a coffee Speciale on Eustracchio, and it was a damn good (expensive) cup of coffee.

    Back to our search for the perfect restaurant. After our quick coffee in a bar further down the street of Via Monserrato (it was quick, because the place was typical Italian, and they obvious didn't like foreign people, so we drank it in a hurry and went out), we went for a small walk and headed back. It looked as if the [FONT=&quot]waiters [/FONT]were [FONT=&quot]surprised [/FONT]to see us back, but we go a princely welcome and a very nice corner table. Despite not ordering a table and it was clear, most tables was already taken.

    Our waiter looked like Elvis. A fun guy, who told us just to relax and he would disk up with some nice starter - and also a nice menu, since he quickly found out we where there for the food more than for the Pope. If there's anything Italian people love to talk about, its food and wine. We were a little nervous about the price to be honest. The trip was a lot more expensive than we anticipated, but we agreed to relax and just see what followed. When he told us the menu we did get a little more concerned, but after securing, that the price would not rip us off totally we said yes, and had one of the best meals ever in a restaurant.

    Their wine guy came along and we chose a nice soft white wine. He learned that we are interested in whisky, and got so thrilled, that Peter got free whisky tastings for the coffee. It was such a delightful evening. Elvis was telling us little stories about the region, himself, the food - and we asked them if they were having any New Years arrangements the day after. Which they had. The price was way over the top of what we had in mind. But after talking it through we agreed, that we didn't have to eat fanzy the rest of the days, and that we probably would not find a better restaurant to celebrate New Year's Eve at anyway. The arrangement was with an awesome menu, live music, dance, champagne at Midnight a drinks bar.

    That evening we had 2 bottles of wine and a few whiskys - and we danced north through Piazza Navona and home.


    Through beautiful hallways in the Vatican Museum. Art was everywhere around you.

    One of our highlights on the trip was visiting the Vatican Museum, and especially the Sistine Chapel. Before getting to the chapel we had to walk through the wonderful halls of Renaissance paintings, Etruscan relics and Egyptian [FONT=&quot]artifacts [/FONT]- and a beautiful architecture, furnishing and decoration. The fantastic Rooms of Raffael and the breathtaking Sistine Chapel was well worth the trip to Rome in itself - only thing I could have been without was all the other tourists. I believe it is because of the season - New Year - all the people heading to Rome to hear the Pope etc.

    After the visit we walked around the Vatican City - it took perhaps a little hour, but the trip showed us a different version of Rome, a very silent and beautiful version. Our driver told us, that the city has a secret drive way for the Pope and even its own railway. We can proudly say now, that we walked around a country!


    It was with great excitement that we head back to our favorite restaurant, Pierluigi, in the evening to celebrate New Year. we ordered the table at 19.30, but were one of the first couples there. The other was a young Russian couple sitting not far from us. Dunno how they could afford this evening, and if they cared; she was constantly writing on her phone, while he was asking her not too lol

    Our menu was:

    Flute di Franciacorta con Amouse-Bouche di Benvenuto (bread and a glass of aperitif champagne)
    Oven baked Scallops with Porcini Mushrooms 'Au Gratin'
    Pousse en Claire Label Rouge Oysters (France) with Champagne Sorbet and Caviar
    Small Bites of Yellow Fin Tuna with Fresh Wild Raspberries
    Potatoes [FONT=&quot]canap [/FONT]with Paddlefish Mousse and Fondente of Mascarpone and Caviar
    - all above served on a plate as a starter
    Risotto with Brusel Sprouts Julienne, Organic Pancetta and Wild Chestnuts
    Homemade Pumpkin Ravioli with Zucchini Flowers and Red Imperial Prawns
    Oven baked Turbot with Velvet Lemon Sauce and Fresh Mediterraneo Lobster Tails
    Homemade [FONT=&quot]Chocolate Cigar [/FONT]with Grandmarnier Vanilla Ice cream and Mint

    I don't have to tell you this was superb food! For every dish we got we were more and more surprised about the delicatesse and when we came to the [FONT=&quot]Pumpkin [/FONT]Ravioli, and I can honestly say that is the best I have ever gotten. We told the waiter, who was Elvis, and he was very pleased. After the fish, I went to the toilet, and when I came back he told me a surprise was waiting. And ... we got an extra plate of the Ravioli LOL!!! I was INCREDIBLY full, but had it anyway. I really could not resist - and we were not in a hurry anyway.

    The desert was art! A chocolate Cigar in an ashtray - with something that looked like ash, but it was sugar. Next to it was a cocktail glas and in that the Grandmarnier Vanilla Ice cream! Just look at the picture how decorative it looks! But the taste, OH the taste is something difficult to describe - like heaven!

    New Year's Evening dessert at Pierluigi.

    After diner and after fireworks the bar was open. They had a bartender mixing cocktails! And that was really really fun and interesting. He did it with SUCH a passion I have never seen anything like it. It didn't matter it took him 20 minutes to mix one drink - people where just standing there [FONT=&quot]watching [/FONT]him making them. I told him at a point, that he didn't mix drinks but made art and he totally blushed! I am sure he had a crush on Peter though, because he remembered his drinks - or perhaps it was because Peter was the only one daring to try out the drink with Absynth ... Not sure!

    We danced all night with the guests, the waiters and had so much fun, until we danced home through the small streets of Rome around 03.30. We had a wonderful evening and night, and wish to thank the restaurant for this great experience.


    ----------------To be continued when time allows it
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 15, 2015
  2. Fantastique! Loved it, thanks for the write-up.
  3. Corso del rinasci there is a restaurant called "ottavio" there i got my best cafe (espresso) in rome
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