Eating and Drinking in Rome



From 3 to 7 January 2015 a historical palace in the heart of Rome will be exceptionally open to public: it’s Palazzo Ferrajoli, facing on Piazza Colonna, where the famous Antonine Column stands since centuries at few steps from the Italian Parliament. This rare chance to access it, enjoying a guided tour of the palace together with a unique perspective on the Column itself, is provided on the occasion of the Festival of Lights in Piazza Colonna. The four-day free event offers to visitors art, music and literature.
To take part to it no particular requirements are needed: just contact to get the free voucher to access it!

Rome Celebrates Chocolate


Who doesn’t love chocolate? Is one of the few things in life that everybody enjoys. Hey, it produces the same feeling as being in love!

Rome, being a culinary capital, couldn’t forget paying homage to chocolate. Ciok in Roma is a festival to celebrate chocolate, its origin and its relationship with cinema. For 5 days from february 9, 2013 visitors will be able to appreciate the work of artisans and companies dedicated to the production of chocolate and to learn more about its history.

Ciok is a play on the words “Cioccolato” and “Ciak”, Italian for Clapperboard. The exhibition will explore the relationship beetwen chocolate and cinema and will also educate visitors abut the origins of cacao and chocolate, since the festival is sponsored by the Mexican embassy in Rome.

The festival will take place at the Central Montemartini, at Via Ostiense 106 and can be easily reached from Hotel Des Artistes and Yes Hotel with the blue subway line (station Garbatella).

Rome Wine Festival

If you consider yourself to be something of a wine connoisseur,

or you simply enjoy a glass or two every weekend,

 then you should visit the beautiful city of Rome this May.
This is because the city is to play host to a two-day wine extravaganza,
known as the Roma Wine Festival.
The Roma Wine Festival 2012 is held at Citta’s del Gusto, (Citta’ del Gusto, 161 Via Enrico Fermi 00146, Rome, Italy) and promises two days of workshops, meetings, presentations and talks, as well as plenty of wine-tasting, of course. The list of professional attendees lined up to speak at the event is impressive, meaning that visitors can find out everything they need to know about the science of making, tasting and appreciating a good bottle of wine.

Whilst the line-up for this year’s wine festival is not yet known, previous year’s attendees have included:
  • Bernard Burtschy – wine journalist
  • Ian D’Agata – director of the International Wine Academy of Rome
  • Massimo Claudio Comparini – vice director of the International Wine Academy of Rome
  • Charles Metcalfe – wine critic and co-chairman of the London International Wine Challenge

For more information you can visit the website

or contact us at Hotel Des Artistes.

Make sure you don’t miss out on this wonderful event. Hope you enjoy,


The seduction of Jazz in Rome


Like Jazz? Love Rome? Then your in for a treat this october in the eternal city. A very talented young lady by the name of Tess Amodeo-Vickery will be performing in The Cotton Club on the 20th and in Mahalia on the 26th October.

Tess’ tantalising voice will keep you in your seat for hours. She flirts with her audience and keeps the room alive. Don’t miss her, you will enjoy it.

The Cotton club is located at via Bellinzona 2, near Bologna square. Mahalia  is on via Illa 12, near the subway station Furio Camillo (red subway line).

Contact us at Hotel Des Artistes and Yes Hotel to get the best of Rome at the most affordable rates.

Our blogger today: Liam

Fa’Bio: your go-to guy for a fresh meal in Rome

logo_internet_0000_carouselIf your in the prati area, perhaps having just finished with the Vatican Museums then mabey you might be a little peckish. If this is the case then I would recommend a little place called Fa’Bio (a pun based on the owner’s name, Fabio, and the biologic vocation ofhis place). If you’re the kind of person that enjoys a fresh, natural meal then this is the place for you.

Wether you’re a vegetarian or enjoy a big sandwhich full of prosciutto crudo, they will do it all. The atmosphere is a very friendly one and the guys who run it are a couple of characters; they will help you feel right at home. And when you’ve finished with your food they’ll make you a nice smoothie with fresh fruit and many different recipes that they’ve concocted.

Pasta dish

Fa’Bio It’s located on Via Germanico 43, just off Via Ottaviano. To get there just take the red subway line and get off at Ottaviano/ Musei Vaticani.

Hope you enjoy!

And don’t forget: your best options for accomodation in Rome are Hotel Des Artistes and Yes Hotel! Just drop us a line or call us (+39 064454365) to make a reservation or ask us a question.

Our blogger: Liam


Our Blogger: Marcello

In the region of Lombardy during the middle ages it was discovered, by accident, how to prepare a cake that is now popular throughout Italy. At Christmas time it’s a typical dessert .Its called Panettone and its almost impossible to imagine Christmas without it. Panettone - the cake of Italy

Panettone is increasingly becoming popular in other countries in Europe, for example Spain. In Argentina its also very popular. This is because Italian immigrants during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries brought it to these countries. This is even why in the legendary Pampas its also present at the Christmas table.

Now I want to tell you how to prepare it. Here is the recipe:

(For 10 people)

250 g of raisins
1 kg of flour
350 g of butter
10 egg yolks
250g of candied fruit
350 g sugar
60g yeast

1. Knead yeast, dissolved in warm water, and one third of the flour until you get a soft dough.
2. Make a cross on the panettone and let it rise, covered, in a warm place for 20-25 minutes.
3. Resume the kneading with another third of flour and a tablespoon of warm water.
4. Cover again and let the dough rise in a warm place for 3 hours or until it has doubled in volume.
5. Do the same again, adding all the flour and water whilst trying to make the batter thicker. 

6. After about 9 hours of leavening the dough (leaving it to rise) add the melted butter and the egg yolks, one at a time, the sugar – which should be dissolved in water, salt, raisins and well strizzata lightly floured, and candied fruit.
7. Work long enough to get a smooth dough, you will maybe need a couple of hours.
8. Place the dough into the mold, anointed with melted butter and lined with paper baking foil, and place in a 170 degree oven.
9. After about 40 minutes, half cooked, brush the surface of panettone with butter, then put it back in the oven for another 40 minutes.
10. Wait for it to cool down and then push it out.Any time of year... Eaten at Christmas in Italy but abroad Panettone remains a favourite all year round


We hope you will enjoy it. If you want to know some more about this or another secret of Italian cooking just send an email to You can even learn the secrets from our very own nonna.

Christmas in Rome is very special. This is why so many people come to visit Rome and decide to stay in our hotel…We do our best to make them feel like home.

KOPI LUWAK- Good to the last dropping!

Our Author: Saiyora

Saiyora There are so many stereotypes about Italians. Many of them are based on the gastronomic habits if this Mediterranean nation. Italians are known in the world as main pasta eaters- or Italiano Maccheroni Pasta. And it is in fact true that the inhabitants of one of the most gorgeous peninsula do like a lot pasta products. Also they are known for their immense love for the ice-cream, or gelato. And I admit it is one of the most tasteful in the world.

But today I would like to talk about a different Italian passion, which is coffee, very special coffee in Rome. As you may or may not know coffee beans were brought to Europe from Ottoman Empire, which in its turn borrowed them from Africa, precisely Ethiopia bonitohistorical birthplace of coffee. Italy has a whole range of different coffee types, from espresso, cappuccino, ristretto, etc, etc… One of the first places on each agenda of any tourist that comes to Italy should be to try all the types of coffee, prepared in Italy. But again today I will not speak about a normal coffee. I will speak about a very special type of coffee, well, the most expensive in the world! You may be puzzled now, for sure, but I do inform you that this coffee is very, very special and you should be courageous enough to try it. Well, about the costs, this coffee, and let us reveal the secret, called KOPI LUWAK costs 90 euros per 100 gramms!!!

KopiLuwak «Kopi Luwak» (in Bahasa Indonesian Kopi means coffee and Luwak is the name of the animal "producing" beans), or «Civet’s Coffee » is prepared from the coffee beans that have passed through the alimentary system of these animals in Indonesia. These civets are specifically put on coffee plantations and, as they say, they know how to find the best beans of coffee. They eat them, digest, and… Plantation workers then gather excrements , separated from them coffee beans, launder and fry them. Specialists say that this coffee has such a unique aroma. And I do confirm that this smell is all but nasty!
Just some interesting facts about these civets. Recently many hundreds of animals were killed in an attempt to stop the outbreak of SARS. The meat of these animals is being prepared in many Asian countries, especially in China, but it is believed that the Indonesian civet is Bar Bonitodifferent from the Chinese ones. And there practically no chances that a person would drink this coffee accidently. First, it is very expensive and second is specially made!

So, if you have enough courage to drink it while you are in Rome, just go to the Bar Bonito in the Ostiense Train Station and enjoy its particular taste and aroma, as I did just a week ago!

Ostiense station is just few steps away from the Piramide Line B Metro station, if you stay in Hotel Des Artistes in Rome just hop on the train on Castro Pretorio and in 10 minutes you will be in the right place to try the right coffee!




Beautiful Sabina

imageSabina. A very picturesque area, that time in centuries, has changed little, in urbanism and traditions. It is a very famous area in the Lazio, is part of the interesting outskirts of Rome. Its fame comes not only from the natural beauties that contains: it exits a curious legend related with Sabinian women, and the news about the quality of its olive oil has been well spread during centuries.

The legend says that in Rome in the very earlier times the population was predominantly male. To fix this, Romulus, its founder , had an idea: to organize sports festivities in honour of the god Neptune and decided to invite the neighbour towns for the competition. Those of a particular population, Sabina, went to Rome with their wives and children. While the games were celebrated one of the Romans gave an specific sign to which every roman kidnapped a woman and then drove to the men (as planned).

The Romans tried to convince the women saying that they only did so because they wanted to be their wives, and they should be happy and proud of becoming a part of a people chosen by the gods.
The Sabinian men had a different opinion, angry by the insult of treason and rape of their women, attacked the Romans. When it was about to happen what appeared to be the very final battle, the Sabine woman stood between the two combatants to stop the killing because, they saw clearly that winning the imageRomans the would loose their parents, and winning the Sabinians they would loose their husbands and sons. The Sabine woman managed to make them come to a reconciliation and finally the celebrated with a banquet..(So are the woman there so beautiful that they worth such a battle? Check and see :-) 

The Sabina Lazio olive oil comes from olives harvested by hand and squeezed cold, without manipulation or chemical solvents. Which is the secret of the flavor and colour of this oil? image

Take under consideration the following factors:

Climatic characteristics of the area of cultivation and the ground limestone, permeable and dry. Many varieties of olives used, alone or in combination: Carboncella, Leccino, Raja, Frantoio, Moraiolo, Olivastrone, Salviana, Olivago and Roscioli.

A long and patient work.

An excellent nutritional value, the many beneficial properties that make it a unique seasoning and unproven.

So as a result of this, the quality of the product is very high.

Some other little secrets:

– Do you like the onion in ‘salad but has a decided taste too? Let marinate for a fewimage hours in ‘oil sabina: become more gentle and delicate.
– Prepare a special dressing for your salad leaves soak in a liter of oil sabina some dry red chilli, two branches of fresh rosemary, salt, pepper, a clove of garlic and three cloves. Seal the bottle and let rest at least 20 days at room temperature. Shake well before use.
– A cake lighter and healthier? Replace the butter with oil sabina and a jar of low-fat yoghurt. It will be lighter, soft and tasty.

Now the beauty of Sabina combines mountainous landscape with large cultivated areas (cereals, olives and vines in particular), forests of beech and imagechestnut trees, castles on top of hills with stone houses just further down, also landscapes of rolling hills of sand, clay and conglomerates, silver by olive trees. Don’t forget to try their cheeses made with milk from sheep, goat or cow as well as interesting products of spontaneous growing as mushrooms, truffles and wild berries. Enjoy the atmosphere "naive" and the still unspoiled beauty of the wild landscape. 

Visit Farfa in Sabina and the Abbey. The Abbey of Farfa deserves a long visit, given its history back till the Middle Ages and the extraordinary natural splendour. Not far, at Canneto-Casale Bertini there is an olive tree with a circumference of 6.1 meters and a height of 10.
Nearby in Nerola, dominated by the castle Orsini, one can enjoy a restful view of the beautiful countryside. From Nerola can make two trips (short) to Scandriglia and Montorio Romano, where you can buy the oil extra-virgin olive oil.
In Castelnuovo di Farfa , visit the sixteenth century Palazzo Perilli, where is the Museum of Oil of imageSabina. In this original museum, the history of oil is illustrated it proposes at the same time a way through the exhibition of works by contemporary artists and listening to music that creates an enchanting atmosphere.

Keep on the way to Cottanello where you can see the beautiful castle of Hermitage St. Cataldo. It contains frescos in the early’300. The place is fascinating. Also there is a Villa Romana of the I century A.C, that keeps mosaic floors in both black and white with coloured pictures of unusual elegance.

How to get there (very easy indeed). Do not forget to choose as a hub in Rome- a beautiful, like Sabinian women, hotel- Yes Hotel.

By Car: A1 exit Fiano Romano, continue on SS via Salaria, follow the signs to Castelnovo of Farfa.

By train: From Tiburtina train station, about 1 hour trip.

Amatrice and Pasta Amatriciana !

Hi everybody,amatriciana

Finally I’m back with some news and appetizing stories and an attractive place too  that I stronly recommend you visit and, no doubt  it is definitely off the track so the curious will be delighted. Ready? Ok !

Let’s go start a marvellous trip into Amatrice, the village that claims to be the inventor of “pasta all’amatriciana” , which is famous worldwide and so is roman food.

Amatrice is a small town located along Lazio’s boundaries, surrounded by a green basin and  magnificent woods. The basin climbs softly  towards the mountains up to  1800 metres leaving a beautiful grassland that looks just  like a sea of flowers during spring and summer. With its Solitary cascades, beaches, forests and trekking paths the landscape of this part of the Central “Appennino”, is of great fascination for all the fans of the nature.


Now let’s get down to the real business ! I am of course speaking  about the pasta all’amatriciana probably one of the most famous Roman pasta recipes. In fact it  is still going on the diatribe between Rome and Amatricia inherent the pasta all’amatriciana paternity.

Back to its origins this italian pasta was cooked by shepherds with cacio (is a kind of fresh and tasty cheese), typical bacon and pepper, and was  called “alla gricia”.

After the Americas discover  tomatoes and the  importation , the original recipe has changed in the classical one with everybody knows. After the crisis of sheep farming, most of the amatriciani emigrates to Rome where they opened their restaurants. The oldest one , Il Passetto, opened in 1860 , and is still one of the best known place in Rome to eat your Amatriciana.

Only for you the original recipe:spaghetti_amatriciana

For 4 people

500 gr of pasta ( bucatini or spaghetti)

500 gr of tomatoes San Marzano

100gr of smoked bacon (should be very fat )

100gr of pecorino’s cheese

Extra  virgin olive oil

½ glass of dry white wine



Let the tomatoes boil for a few minutes into the water

Take out the seeds from the tomatoes. Cut the bacon in thick slices e cook it in a pan. When fat is melted,  pour in  the wine.

Take the mixture out of the fire and in the same pan cook the tomatoes with the pepper and the oil.

After a minute put the bacon inside. Meanwhile cook the pasta and voilà les jeux sont faits!!!! monlaga2

Good news is that on 30 and 31 of August in Amatrice there will be the fair of the   spaghetti all’amatriciana where you can eat the true amatriciana pasta with its full flavour and wash it down with a good  local italian wine.

For the occasion a stamp will be released ! So what are you waiting for?


Da Roma : SS4 Salaria. Km 132,000 crossroads to Amatrice

For italian food lovers, see here other Italian food recipes !

And for those stopping in Rome here is our selected Rome restaurants where to eat a good Amatriciana !

Mystery of Pasta

Nowdays pasta is all around the world, you could say it’s global, let’s put the question: Where does the pasta come from? Is it so italian as many people think?

sordi-spaghettiThe legend says that Marco Polo introduced the pasta to Italy after his exploration of the East in the 13 century. But we can trace pasta back until the fourth century B.C., an Etruscan tomb showed a group of people making what appears to be pasta. Further yet the Greek mythology suggests that the Greek God Vulcan invented a device that made some kind of… spaghetti

In 2005 a big discovery was made: a 4,000-year-old bowl of noodles has appeared at an archaeological site in western China. Possible proof for the argument that China invented before Italy? "These are definitely the earliest noodles ever found," said Lu Houyuan, a researcher with the Institute of Geology in Beijing.


Now we understand why there are different theories on the matter, basically the following opinions (quotations of mentioned before Lu  Houyuan): " Chinese people say that Marco Polo brought noodles from China back to Italy and Italians say they had noodles before that". The chinese group that made the discover declared: ‘‘All this has been based on documentary material, on personal accounts and menus. But we’ve been unable to find any actual material, until now."

Despite that discovery, some people are inclined to say no to a ‘‘chinese born pasta’’ this, for a simple reason: Once you have begun to make flour, and bread, it seems an obvious next step to make a firm dough, roll it out, and dry it to produce something — pasta — that will keep very well, much better than either flour or bread. Therefore bit’s more likely to think that pasta has been discovered independently more than once in the course of history. ravioli
Moreover, Arabs were already making spaghetti at Trabia, in Sicily, in 1150, long before Marco set out, some others said.
As for ravioli, they’re mentioned in documents predating Marco Polo’s trip. So they didn’t come from China.

So at last the theories are many, but the truth is one, no matter who or when, who invented pasta gave us a great tasty legacy, and that taste is the real mystery.

Once you will visit Rome, do not forget to eat in a very famous restaurant Le mani in pasta in Trastevere, where you will be served typical roman pastasciutta al dente at reasonable price.

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