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“Best Restaurant in Rome!”

Hostaria Antica Roma
Ranked #2,889 of 12,590 Restaurants in Rome
Price range: USD 24 - USD 85
Cuisines: Italian
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Restaurant details
Good for: Romantic, Special Occasion Dining, Groups, Child-friendly, Local cuisine, Business meetings
Dining options: After-hours, Dinner, Lunch, Breakfast, Reservations
Description: One of the most unusual place to eat in the world...a mausoleum of 2000 years ago...
Reviewed 26 May 2012

My wife and I just visited a few days ago and had a fantastic lunch there. All of the food we had in Rome was good, but this was over the top. Paulo was an awesome host and had wonderful stories to tell. It was nice to get personal service from the owner. As I said, the food was amazing. His Tiramisu was the best I have ever had!

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1  Thank joshr911
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviews (679)
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144 - 148 of 679 reviews

Reviewed 18 May 2012

This is the first time I have been compelled to write a review, good or bad

Having booked a long weekend with my wife in beautiful Rome I was looking for a special restaurant on the Saturday night. Based on the outstanding comments on tripadvisor I booked the Hostaria Antica Roma. The first concern was that it was half empty on a Saturday night when most of the other good restaurants were always full. And then we found out why...

Paulo was ok to start with but did seem somewhat full of himself. When the starters arrived in under 5 minutes we were immediately concerned it wasnt fresh food - it wasnt. My wife's crepese salad was made from severely over ripe tomatoes and packet mozzarella balls. My so called fresh starter was actually tinned pickled salmon and also packet mozzarella balls. We had one mouthfull and sent it back.

Then the main course of arrabiata pasta and lasagne arrived which surely couldn't go wrong in Italy... It was the most tasteless lasagne i have ever eaten made from sloppy pasta and cream without any flavours whatsoever. My wifes arrabiata was over cooked and also tasteless. We sent both dishes back and called a taxi which ended up costing us 60 euros return fare.

To be fair to Paolo he only charged us for the wine and bread because the food was so bad. However he showed his true colours when he gave me the 5 euros change by flicking it across the table and walking off as if it was our fault !

Having used tripadvisor successfully before it is incredibly disappointing when you go to a restaurant like this which is currently #17 out of over #3,500 restaurants in Rome. I would defy anyone to find a worse restaurant in Rome - it shouldn't even be in top 2,000 let alone the top 20.

Fortunately everywhere else we ate in Rome was fantastic and the people really friendly so it didn't ruin our weekend. But don't make the same mistake and waste your time and money on this restaurant.

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8  Thank Kevin T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
blutos, Proprietario at Hostaria Antica Roma, responded to this reviewResponded 31 May 2012

Dear Patron,

I wish to excuse myself for the delay in answering your review, but work within the kitchen and amidst the tables governs my life.

Anyways, allow me to answer point by point to your assertions.

1) On weekends, Romans do not go to dinner before 8:30, 9:00 pm. For this reason the restaurant was still half empty. At 7:30 pm, usually we cater foreigners.

Furthermore, my restaurant is not located in the center of the city, where one might assume we attract/catch by-goers like fish in a net.

2) I am regretful that the Caprese salad and the salmon with mozzarella were not to your liking, but you are mistaken in saying that the fare is not fresh.

We buy the vegetables, as well as Buffalo Mozzarellas and every other ingredient, every day.

The Buffalo Mozzarellas have the DOP seal (Italian State Seal of protected origin guaranteeing, de facto the quality of the product), they arrive every day form Caserta and are produced with 100% Buffalo milk, they are sold in 250 gr sealed confections so to guarantee hygiene and food safety and not in mere crates/boxes.

Concerning the tomatoes it is the first time I ever receive a complaint. Maybe you have better ones in England where the sun shines 365 days a year.

For your information, we receive fresh salmon, which we slaughter and fillet, then chill blast it (by Italian regulation on maritime foodstuffs). Finally it is cut and marinated for 24 hours in orange juice.

3) The lasagna has delighted all patrons who have had the chance to try it, but if you were looking for a classical lasagna with tomato and besciamella, you had been warned of the differences.

Concerning the Pasta all’Arrabbiata, I am not sure what to say. I took back your plates to the kitchen, and noticing you had not even tried them, I found fit to make sure they were up to the expectations, and in fact the Arrabbiata was good.

We make all our sauces on demand in our restaurant.

4) I admit I only billed you for the wine and bread, not for a sense of guilt, but because seeing your unsatisfied behavior, I believed it to be correct.

5) It is true, I did not take the time to thank you while handing you the change, but it is frustrating for anyone not to be able to meet expectancies, and still I am a man, with his humanly weaknesses. This is what I am, a host, with whose family tries to conduce with dedication, passion and honesty a restaurant present in Rome for 32 years, with the luck that patrons such as yourself had never come about so far.

6) Tripadvisor is a great communication medium, and I am conscious that there are restaurants in the Eternal City better then mine. But exceeding in saying that I pay to be reviewed on said website is just plainly over the top, and dishonest on your behalf. My family and I are here since way before internet and Tripadvisor had been launched.

Most of all, I have never paid anyone to review my restaurant on the internet or on the hundreds of newspapers from around the globe which regularly speak of us and our genuine and familiar cuisine.

Anyways I wish to thank you for your feedback and wish you good luck.

Paolo Magnanimi, host in Rome.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 May 2012

I went to dinner because I had recommended my friends in Rome. I was a little disappointed, I expected more in some special dish and the price and was way too high. I can not say that the kitchen is not good, but the end result in total and pretty poor.

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2  Thank Lance T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 May 2012

This is our 2nd time dining w/Paolo at Hostaria Antica Roma. We were only in Rome for one day as a daystop for our cruiseship, but this was definitely on our must do for dining. We were warmly welcomed by Paolo and had a wonderful lunch. We were so happy we made the time and effort to come again as our lunch was absolutely fabulous. The food, atmosphere and the congeniality of Marco all make this a compelling dining experience.

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1  Thank Equinox03
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 May 2012

OK so The Pantheon, Vatican, Coliseum, Spanish Steps are on your "to do " list during your visit to Rome, well add one more thing, Hostaria Antica Roma. It's in some ancient catacombs built by emperor Augustus, and it is outside of the cities main attractions, a 16 euro cab ride from termini station, but this is definitely a dining experience not to be missed.
The owner is a charismatic, pretty well traveled guy named Paulo. He greeted us at the door and showed us around the restaurant and told my wife and I the history of the place.
We were there on a rainy Sunday night, and there was a major fudbol game on, so the place was pretty empty, but well worth it.
Food was amazing, and if he asks you if you like garlic, say YES, because he will bring you out a sample of a garlic cheese which is like no other you will find anywhere.
The price was pretty affordable, considerign what you are getting.
We had 2 bottles of wine, apps, 2 entrees, 2 main courses, 2 expressos, and 2 deserts, along with a complimentary chocolate mousse, and the bill came out to 108 euro's. Dining like this and experience's such as the one we had at Hostaria Antica, is the reason behind people travel. You have to try this place out, you will not regret it.

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2  Thank Mauricio H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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