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Where to head in Rome for the best breakfast - Italian Style and Not



Italians may not be big breakfast eaters, but that doesn't mean they don't take breakfast seriously. Having a cappuccino or a caffè is essential for Italians in the morning. Without it, they just don't function. To get their caffeine fix in the morning and throughout the day for that matter, many Italians go to a neighborhood bar or a café. Along with their coffee, they'll order a delicious pastry called a cornetto (similar to a croissant - but don't ever call it one!) that typically vary from semplice (plain), integrale (whole wheat with honey inside), cioccolato (chocolate or Nutella), crema (cream) and marmellata (jelly). Italians might also order a ciambella (doughnut), ciambellone (a slice of poundcake) or even a Macedonia (fruit cup).

Unlike in America, most Italians drink their cappuccino at the bar or they may sit down briefly to enjoy it. Eating breakfast at the bar is an essential part of Italian culture. It's not just the place where you order your coffee and pastry to go. It's the place where, even after a few days of going there, the owners know your name and what you like to order. Let a few more weeks pass by, and they'll know all about your family. your political views and what soccer team you root for.

For coffee in the morning (or any time really!) head to one of the Rome's most historic coffee house Tazza d'Oro or opt for a vegetarian weekend brunch at Ketumbar. For eggs and bacon, pancakes and the like, head to Coromandel or the latest hotspot, Marigold for avocado on rye and other sweet treats including brownies and cinnamon rolls. 10Best gives you the rundown of bars and cafés around Rome to have your Italian breakfast (and a few thrown in for that international or full American breakfast experience which Romans are starting to take a liking to!).


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Located in the heart of Trastevere, Baylon is super popular with locals and foreigners alike. Its all-day dining format keeps it busy with people working off their free wifi during the day and buzzing with locals having aperitivo or an after-dinner drink in the evening and into the wee hours of the night. Breakfast and brunch is a super casual affair and the menu features everything from a full English breakfast with scrambled eggs, bacon and toast plus truffled roast potatoes, to more exotic treats like Moroccan style eggs. Vegans are also catered for with some items like french toast and if you have a sweet tooth, their pancakes are served with either chocolate sauce or seasonal fresh fruit. The walls here are lined with vintage and second-hand books and they are all for sale too. They have a full juice bar with whatever fruit and vegetables are in season and their friendly staff is more than happy to help you choose just the right one. BUS: H, 3, 75. TRAM: 8.

Recommended for Breakfast because: A hit with the locals, Baylon is great from breakfast through to late.

Maria's expert tip: Try a freshly squeezed juice - whatever is fresh and in season can make the cut!

Read more about Baylon →




Open daily from 11 am to 3 am, Ketumbar is located in the working-class foodie neighborhood of Testaccio and is a leader in bio, organic and vegetarian dining. In fact, vegan, gluten-free, and just about any intolerance can be catered for. The large open space with a vintage style feel and even outdoor dining (in the warmer months), make for a relaxed atmosphere at any time of day. This is probably one of Rome's best late breakfast and brunch options for vegetarians and vegans or anyone looking for 0km and organic produce. It's not completely vegetarian but caters extremely well for it. Buffet style, there are vegetable dishes, pasta, salads, legumes and soups in the colder months. Different types of bread are also available - many, gluten-free. Organic desserts are on the cards too. The brunch is family friendly with entertainment provided for kids and dishes to cater for their likes too. Brunch is held on Saturday and Sunday from 12pm-4pm, �15 for adults and �10 for children (inclusive of children's entertainment). Exclusive of drinks. BUS: 75, 3. METRO: Piramide.

Recommended for Breakfast because: A great all day option for vegetarians and vegans.

Maria's expert tip: Don't leave the kids at home - Ketumbar puts on weekend entertainment for kids of all ages.

Read more about Ketumbar →


Cristalli di Zucchero


If you have a sweet tooth, Cristalli di Zucchero will satisfy your every decadent need and desire. This cute little bakery shop located near the Circus Maximus is a true gem for those who happen to stumble upon it. At this pastry shop, one can pick up some of the tastiest miniature sized cakes and tarts that are almost too cute to eat. Cristalli di Zucchero has two locations: one in Monteverde (Via di Val Tellina, 114) and the other near Circus Maximus (Via di San Teodoro, 88). The Monteverde location has tables where one can sit outside and have their cake and eat it too. Cristalli di Zucchero also makes some pretty amazing miniature sized panini made with buttery croissants. Yum! METRO: Circo Massimo

Recommended for Breakfast because: Italians love sweets at breakfast and it doesn't get much sweeter than this.

Maria's expert tip: Make sure to try the mini-cheesecakes and teeny brownies. It makes for a delightful accompaniment to your morning coffee.

Read more about Cristalli di Zucchero →


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7
San Giovanni/Termini/Colle Oppio
Necci dal 1924


This restaurant, bar and cafe has one of the nicest outdoor spaces in Rome. Located in the gentrified Pigneto neighborhood, Necci is best known for being the haunt of poet, writer, director Pier Paolo Pasolini. With several spaces outside, under the trees or under tents or under the awning, there is no need to feel cramped when deciding to eat here. The highlight for breakfast and brunch here is that Necci bakes all their pastries and bread daily on site. The rotating menu has such specialties as paccheri pasta with octopus, cherry tomatoes and olives and steak with fries. It's really your one-stop dining outlet in the Pigneto neighborhood. BUS: 81

Recommended for Breakfast because: A great option in the hip Pigneto neighborhood, a short tram or bus ride from the historical center.

Maria's expert tip: Try the cheesecake. It's to die for!

Read more about Necci dal 1924 →


Caffetteria d'Arte al Chiostro del Bramante
Photo courtesy of Nicole Arriaga


How many places do you know of where you can sit in a charming Renaissance cloister while sipping on a cappuccino? Not too many, that's for sure. The Choistro del Bramante is a cloister turned venue space for art and photographic exhibitions. It's also attached to the Santa Maria della Pace church. On the first floor of the cloister, there is a lovely café where one can have coffee, tea and some good conversation. They also serve sandwiches and salads for lunch. A lovely perk in addition to the charming view is the free WiFi for guests. BUS: 492, 30.

Recommended for Breakfast because: Why not have a coffee or breakfast in one of Rome's oldest buildings?

Maria's expert tip: They serve a pretty good breakfast and brunch on Saturdays and Sundays featuring eggs and omelets

Read more about Caffetteria d'Arte al Chiostro del Bramante →


5
Vaticano/Borgo
Castroni


Located near the Vatican on the famous shopping street, Via Cola di Rienzo is a specialty coffee shop called Castroni. The coffee shop first opened in 1932 on Via Cola di Rienzo and later expanded with 6 other locations in the Vatican, Centro and other areas around Rome. While it's more of a shop rather than a café, there is a bar where you can order coffee and pastries. There is no actual seating area in the bar. However, the wide selection of interesting coffees, teas and other delicacies keeps your mind off the fact that you don't have a seat. BUS: 30, 280, 492. METRO: Ottaviano.

Recommended for Breakfast because: Castroni is a Roman institution and is frequented by locals at all times of the day.

Maria's expert tip: Castroni also has a small foreign food section. For those itching to get their hands on comfort foods from back home, you might be able to find them here.

Read more about Castroni →


4
Airport - Fco
Tazza d'Oro


This bar is always bustling, no matter what time of the day you go. Tazza d'Oro was established in 1946, is considered to be by many, the best coffee in all of Rome. Its prime location just up the street from the Pantheon makes it a hub for tourists, locals, office workers and politicians. Its claim to fame is its granita di caffé con panna (a lightly sweetened frozen espresso topped with whipped cream). An added advantage is that you can also buy Tazza d'Oro's coffee beans to take home with you and other gifts too. Standing room only. Bus: 116.

Recommended for Breakfast because: Located right by the Pantheon, this historic bar could not be more central.

Maria's expert tip: Before ordering your coffee, you must pay first and get a receipt. The cashier is a little hidden, as it's located in the very back. Without a receipt here, no one will pay attention to you.

Read more about Tazza d'Oro →




This bakery near Campo de' Fiori is a favorite with local kids and adults alike. Its pizza taglio, or pizza by the slice, comes out of the oven piping hot and fresh to keep customers happy. The toppings range from a simple Margherita (tomato sauce and mozzarella) and Rossa (just tomato sauce) to more complicated arrangements like sausage and Fiori di Zucca. There will be something to please everyone. And if it's something more substantial you're after, then there is a small buffet with local vegetables and sometimes porchetta, or stuffed, roasted pork. Often the small take away place gets crowded so ask for your lunch to be wrapped up and take it to nearby Campo or Piazza Farnese where your kids can enjoy eating outside. TRAM: 8 BUS: 30, 40, 62, 64, 70, 87

Recommended for Breakfast because: A locals' favorite and great for a sweet or savory breakfast on the run. Their bar Roscioli Caffe is around the corner.

Maria's expert tip: Try the pizza Rossa - pizza with tomato sauce. It's one of the best in Rome and the kids will love it.

Read more about Antico Forno Roscioli →




Rome now boasts an ever-growing list of breakfast and brunch places - places that do more of the non-Italian typical brunch items like eggs and pancakes. But Coromandel remains one of the best and was a pioneer in the whole breakfast/brunch/ afternoon tea field. You can also enjoy their full lunch or dinner menu but Romans and non-flock here especially for quality eggs benedict, pastries, bagels, cakes and more served in their intimate and vintage tea-room inspired locale a short walk from Piazza Navona. Their pancake stack comes complete with bacon and maple syrup and there's always yogurt and fruit and a selection of premium herbal teas for the more health conscious. Dinner is an elegant but not pretentious affair with local seafood, meat and pasta on the extensive menu. Monday to Saturday 8:30 am to 3 pm, Sundays 8:30 am to 4 pm and Thursday-Saturday also from 8 pm to late.

Recommended for Breakfast because: Centrally located, brunch and breakfast in town don't get much better than this institution.

Maria's expert tip: Book in advance for Sunday brunch as it gets super busy.

Read more about Coromandel →




This self-proclaimed restaurant and micro-bakery is oh-so-much more. Marigold is hard work, dream chasing and living by Danish implant Sofie Wochner and her Calabrian husband Domenico Cortese. He is a passionate cook, she a baker and so comes together with the perfect mix for Rome's latest trendsetter in Rome's former industrial heart of Ostiense. Rome's foodie obsessed were until recently treated by Sofie and Domenico at their outstanding pop-up dinners under the guise of The Eatery but now this permanent locale puts on a pretty show with a counter full of decadent baked goods - think cinnamon rolls, carrot cake with cream cheese frosting and chocolate brownie cheesecake - breakfast, brunch and weekend dinners. At breakfast and brunch there's avocado on rye with poached eggs and at dinner, Domenico shows off with his homemade pasta-filled creations. It really feels like you're welcomed not only into their home but into their little dream-come-reality. Open for breakfast and lunch Tuesday to Friday, brunch on weekends and dinner on Friday and Saturday. Metro: Piramide.

Recommended for Breakfast because: Don't miss Rome's latest hotspot where Sofie and Domenico make you feel right at home.

Maria's expert tip: Get in early for weekend brunch as the line is out the door after 1 pm.

Read more about Marigold Roma →


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Meet Maria Pasquale

Born to Italian parents, Maria always knew Rome was her destiny, although she was raised in Melbourne.

An award winning food and travel writer, in addition to 10Best USA Today she also...  More About Maria

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