Piccadilly Roma, in the Re di Roma district, is a cocktail bar, restaurant and cafe which follows through from morning til night with considerable charm and flair.
It’s a great reminder that whether you’re a tourist in Rome, or even if you live here – please don’t just stick to the historic centre when you go out (or your usual haunts).
Rome’s residential neighbourhoods – many of which are not far from Rome’s monuments and easy to get to on public transport – have never been stronger in terms of modern restaurants and smart, professional service.
Re di Roma – which has its own Metro stop – is an easy stroll from the Basilica of San Giovanni or an equally easy quick hop on the underground.
Add the fact that you often pay a euro or two less to dine once you’re removed from the relics of ancient Rome, and you can really put together a fun night out in the city this way which really reflects how the Romans live.
Piccadilly Roma is a shining example of this. The bar-restaurant opened a few years ago, but after a stunning refurbishment last year is really coming into its own.
Visit Picadilly from 10 am for coffee and a pastry; don’t miss the fresh lunch menu; but do come in the evenings, when cocktails and dinner take centre stage and the menu is a real delight.
I went to check out Picadilly quite recently, for the launch of its latest cocktail list and food menu, and I wasn’t disappointed.
There’s an impressive team at work here: Chef Mirko Campoli, who is also executive chef of upmarket eatery, Osteria 140, has pieced together a modern menu which is rich is seasonal vegetables and exquisite meat and fish options – a real treat.
Mirko is also a finalist in this year’s Cucinema competition, a cookery contest inspired by film – click here for more information.
Behind the bar, look out for the creations of resident barman Angelo Bonanni, with the collaboration of Giordana Verini.
We started the evening with a tender, boiled beef meatball. This absolutely melted in the mouth and was the perfect stomach opener.
It was paired with a new creation from Barman Angelo, a Daiquiri Sajous, combining Haitian rum, lime and sugar syrup. An ideal, tart and zingy accompaniment to a mouthful of red meat.
Next, we had perhaps my favourite dish of the night – beetroot risotto with hibiscus elixir, scampi, green apple and creamy burrata. I’m a huge fan of vegetables and love restaurants which manage to cram as many healthy ingredients into a dish as this. Despite being an antioxidant winner, the creamy burrata and strips of apple made it feel very luxurious.
This was combined with the new Camparotto cocktail, featuring Campari, Aperol, amar8, Peychaud’s bitters, and Chinotto Lurisia. I love cocktails which start with a bitter note and the Aperol really smooths this drink out into a balanced, and not over-sweet finish. Absolutely recommended.
Next up was main course time – happily combining one of my favourite fishes with one of my absolute favourite winter vegetables.
Ricciola – a Mediterranean amberjack – is a popular, flavourful fish in Rome and has to be tried. Served on gently poached puntarelle greens, which retained their crunch, plus a shaving of black truffle, this was a real triumph on the plate.
The fish course was paired with a cocktail dubbed Bloody Bloody – a fusion take on the classic Bloody Mary. With Worcestershire sauce swapped for soy sauce, a hint of wasabi, plus the usual salt and pepper – it was a really tasty departure east.
There was still room for dessert, a beautifully presented plate of deconstructed trifle called ‘ricordo di una zuppa inglese’ (memory of a trifle, what a fun name!).
This was served with a classy champagne cocktail, called Lady Violet, combining violet liquor over a sugar cube, with champagne and soda. A perfect, refined close to the meal.
Piccadilly Roma really exceeded my expectations, and I can’t wait to go back for lunch. It combined really high quality food and drinks with the friendliness of a neighbourhood bar. What more can you want? Highly recommended.
Testaccina was a guest of Piccadilly
Piccadilly Roma |Via Appia Nuova, 127 | Rome, Italy | Tel +39 06 9761 4438
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