There are as many reasons to return to Rome as there are people who travel there. Some come for the antiquity. Some for the shopping. There are those who come exclusively for the art. And then…
There are those who come for the food! I spend a good deal of time in Rome – it is my ‘heart home’. I’ll share a secret with you – I found the perfect pizza!
Just across the street from the Hotel Adriatic is the wonderful local ristorante Pizzeria Porta Castello. Named thus because it sits nearly in the backyard of Castello Sant’Angelo, Porta Castello is as much home to me as the Hotel Adriatic. Barely outside the ‘old walls’ this area is well-known to locals and visitors who disdain the touristy Borgo Pio. Yet it is only a few minutes’ walk to either Castello Sant’Angelo or Piazza San Pietro (St. Peter’s Square).
Bernardo and his lovely wife offer hospitality and excellent food, all served with laughter and happiness. From the crowded lunchtime banter when pleased patrons share wine and stories to the luminous evenings with the lights of Castello Santa’Angelo glowing off of the windows and outdoor seating, Porta Castello is the home and kitchen away from home.
On the subject of pizza – a true Roman pizza has a thin rolled and patted crust, the lightest brush of delicate marinara sprinkled with several cheeses and lovingly dotted with basilico, a true Margarita, or dressed with transparent rounds of cipolla (onion) and funghi (mushroom sliced so thin that they would disintegrate if one blew gently on them!).
One rainy night, long after most of the patrons had gone home, Bernardo taught me how to make his dough so that when back at home in Santa Monica, I could replicate his pizza closing my eyes and breathing in the amazing aroma. It is then that I think of my friends at Porta Castello; I hear the clanking of dinnerware and the delighted conversations; the pizza brings me to my ‘heart home’ again.<a href=”http://www.tripadvisor.com/LocationPhotos-g187791-d1151305-Porta_Castello-Rome_Lazio.html”><img alt=”Photos of Porta Castello, Rome” src=”http://media-cdn.tripadvisor.com/media/photo-s/03/e3/2e/24/porta-castello.jpg”/></a><br/>This photo of <a href=”http://www.tripadvisor.com/Restaurant_Review-g187791-d1151305-Reviews-Porta_Castello-Rome_Lazio.html”>Porta Castello</a> is courtesy of TripAdvisor