Piazza Fiametta 10, Rome (On the side of the Genio Hotel)
My feet are killing me.
If I showed you an a map how far I walked today, you wouldn't believe me.
Fiametta is the first restaurant I ever ate in in Italy, 7 years ago. I settled here this evening because I am eating a little late. I popped by a few other places that were on my list and either they were full or no one was in them. I always wonder how some of these places that are recommended in the books are empty. An empty restaurant is a bad sign. One of my choices was not only empty, but lighted with floresent lights. I can't eat in bad lighting.
Well, Fiametta is not lighted that great but at least it's incandesent lights. The lights hanging from the ceiling are quite odd. They are barrels surrounded with clear glass carafes with bright bulbs inside. Odd.
I am going to be a hog tonight for dinner. Since I know Fiametta has good pasta and pizza, I am ordering both and skipping the sides.
I am starting with Spaghetti al Carbonara (my personal favorite @ €7). Tonight my instinct didn't steer me wrong. Everyone may have their personal opinion about carbonara, but tonight was one of the best I have had. In case you don't know, carbonara is spaghetti in a sauce of cream, eggs, cheese, pepper and bacon. Besides for the great flavor the pasta was cooked to a perfect al dente, on a legendary scale. I gotta get that right at home!
My pizza choice was with tomato, cheese and proscuitto (€8.50). I am not a big fan of pizza but I wanted to try it here. A lot of the pizzerias in Rome make pizza in the "Roman" style. This means it has a cracker thin crust which is sometime charred around the edges. Don't fear, it adds to the flavor.
The pizza was pretty good and I ate about 3/4 of it. There was nothing wrong with it but nothing that excited me.
Fiametta isn't going to win any Michelin awards but it's a good place, which isn't a tourist trap, near the Piazza Navona. The service is basic and impersonal and atmosphere is a bit to "faux Roman" for me. For food, I would stick to the pastas and maybe a salad, unless you really love pizza.
Prices are reasonable. My meal which included a 1/4 liter of house blood (oops I mean wine) and a small bottle of water cost €22 ($28).
Note-The house jug wine sold by the carafe is uninspiring (borderline undrinkable). Since prices are resonable, buy a bottle of something better instead.
Guess where I am going for dessert?
(Hint, it's cold and creamy)