Italian food rules: the lowdown

May 22, 2019

Italians give the appearance of being laid back and relaxed, but when it comes to food all this vanishes. Overtake on the inside lane, run a red light or smoke in a club, sure, but do NOT mess with culinary tradition. These rules are numerous, rigid, at times laughable and, in my English opinion, not worth taking too seriously if you actually want to enjoy your meal - but they are a pretty essential part of Italy, so here's the tea.

A traditional Italian meal...

Will go like this: antipasto (starter), primo (pasta) secondo (meat and vegetables), fruit, dolci (pudding), coffee and liquors. And yes, yes, it IS as filling as it sounds.

Do Italians eat like this every day?! Absolutely not, thank god. Mostly a primo on its own is fine at lunch, and a secondo or a pizza at dinner.

What's it really like living in Rome? Costs, language, FAQ

May 15, 2019

I've been living in Rome for about a year in total now, and I still get asked every time I meet someone: why are you here?

Sure, to anyone outside Italy living here seems idyllic. Pizza, pasta, good wine, sun, sea, sand... we all know what Italy is famous for. But beyond the rosy picture that tourists have of the country, the reality is pretty different. The economy is tough, politics are unstable, many young Italians choose to leave because jobs are few and far between. So, I thought I'd give an honest rundown of what it's really like living in Rome.

Rome on a budget: what to do, eat, drink and see

April 02, 2019

I am no stranger to budget travel. In fact, I unfortunately happen to be one of those people who has a bit of a problem spending money, even when I do have it - not the best trait, in reality. Some would call it tight, I like to call it *thrifty*. Anyway, when I was living in Rome a couple of years ago money wasn't in abundance - which was tricky for me, being someone who likes to eat and drink out, a LOT. So I had to learn the secrets of doing this in Rome without spending a fortune, and I was pleasantly surprised. Everyone tends to see Rome as quite an expensive place, and I guess it can be - I remember my parents coming back from Rome a couple of years ago with the defining memory being the time they paid €20 for two scoops of ice cream at a gelateria near the Spanish Steps - but it really doesn't have to be that expensive. Rome is definitely possible on a budget - here are my tips.

Magical Trastevere food tour with The Roman Guy

March 27, 2019

Last week was a real milestone for my blog: it was the first time I've been invited to cover an event, which is super exciting! The Roman Guy, a Rome-based tour operator, got in touch a couple of weeks ago and asked if I'd be interesting in coming on a food tour of Trastevere, in exchange for a non-biased review on my blog. *All opinions are still my own!* Since this involved three of my favourite things, namely food, Trastevere and learning about Rome, I obviously said YES PLEASE. So, without further ado...

Local Foodie Tour in Trastevere by The Roman Guy 

I'll admit I've always been a little sceptical about tours in general - yes, they're great for learning hard facts about the city, but being part of a crowd and herded like sheep from monument to monument isn't something that really draws me in. This scepticism was doubled on a food tour - would it really be authentic food?

The first thing I should say about this tour is that the group was really small. The maximum is 12, but there was only eight of us on my tour - which I think was the perfect amount, as it allowed us all to get to know each other.

Review: Vittorio Spezie e Cucina

March 21, 2019

The area around Termini often gets a bit of a bad rep, but I quite like it. San Lorenzo is full of cool bars that are buzzing in the evenings - they're full of students and a little bit 'edgy', so they remind me of my time in Bologna. Then the other side of the tracks there's Piazza Emanuele, famous for being one of the more multicultural areas of Rome - traditional Roman architecture sits alongside street markets and ethnic restaurants. I kinda love that juxtapostition, and I guess the owners of new restaurant and bar Vittorio Spezie e Cucina do too - it brings together traditional Italian food with the spices of the Piazza Emanuele area.