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Rome: Looking for a restaurant recommendation for Christmas Eve dinner

Rome: Looking for a restaurant recommendation for Christmas Eve dinner

Old Nov 21st, 2007, 07:49 AM
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Rome: Looking for a restaurant recommendation for Christmas Eve dinner

Hello to all my friendly fodorites!

My mother and I will be in Rome for Christmas this year, arriving on Dec. 23rd. We have dinner covered for Christmas but I have been looking to find a place for Christmas Eve dinner. I wanted to make reservations since I assume (1) many restaurants may be closed that night and (2) it may be difficult to just "walk-in" on the holiday evening.

I've contacted my hotel about a recommendation and they provided one for a place called Barocco. They indicated it is near the hotel and reasonably priced.

At this time I am still looking for other options. Since it will be Christmas Eve I wanted to have a nice meal, but not necessarily "break the bank" for it.

We do have a walking tour of the Jewish Ghetto schedule for Christmas Eve day (11am-2pm) and thought maybe there would be some restarants in that area.

Any recommendations are gladly welcome!
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Old Nov 24th, 2007, 07:43 PM
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Hi LowCountryIslander,
We were in Rome last year for Christmas and I have no great recommendations, we cooked dinner at our apartment on Christmas Eve, but we were very surprised to find that many, many things that were open on Christmas Eve were closed on St. Stephens Day, the 26th.
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Old Nov 24th, 2007, 07:59 PM
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Thanks Rosetravels. I'm happy to hear places were open on Christmas Eve.
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Old Nov 24th, 2007, 08:22 PM
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Ummm, LowCountryIslander, rosetravels said "many places" were open on December 24, and she didn't try to go to a restaurant that night.

December 24 is not an official holiday in Italy, but most families celebrate Christmas Eve at home. Stores will be open at least part of the day, but I'm afraid you'll find many (most?) restaurants closed for dinner.

December 26, on the other hand, *is* an official holiday, so most stores will be closed. Restaurants will be more likely to be open.

If you're in the Ghetto on December 24, you can ask at the restaurants whether they will be open for dinner. Da Giggetto al Portico di Ottavia is the most reasonably priced; Piperno and Vecchia Roma are more upscale.
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Old Nov 24th, 2007, 08:47 PM
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Although a lot of stores and some other things were open on the 24th, I agree that very few restaurants are open Christmas Eve. In fact, there aren't a whole lot more open on Christmas Day or the 26th. For some reason, I don't have the name of the restaurant where I ate Christmas Eve last year, but it was Passamento 1860 or something like that. It is immediately north of the Piazza Navona. The eel appetizer was delicious (that is a traditional dish for Christmas Eve in Italy).

If you want more information about that time of year, here is my trip report:
http://www.fodors.com/forums/threads...2&tid=34922204
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Old Nov 24th, 2007, 08:59 PM
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http://www.ristorante-passetto.com/

The Web site says "Aperto tutti i giorni dell'anno." Open every day of the year. An old classic, upscale prices.
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Old Nov 24th, 2007, 09:25 PM
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Zerlino, yes that's it. My dinner of Grilled Eel Cacciatore, Saltimbocco alla Romano, Artichoke alla Romano and 1/2 bottle of wine was 57 Euro (that probably included a small tip of 2-3 Euro).
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Old Nov 25th, 2007, 05:39 AM
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Thanks Zerlina and SusanP. I've made note of the restaurant you mentioned and will email them about a reservation.

Thanks!
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Old Nov 25th, 2007, 06:01 AM
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Are you planning to do one of the masses on Christmas Eve?

I would highly recommend going to the Pantheon, it was amazing and I'm not religious.

dave
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Old Nov 25th, 2007, 04:03 PM
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daveesl...

Yes, I was planning to try and attend the Mass at the Pantheon. I believe I read a post you made about that and it put the seed in my head to go to that Mass.

I tried to secure tickets for Mass at the Vatican through my church here at home but was not able to get them. Then as an afterthought I realized the Vatican will probably be mobbed. I'm expecting crowds everywhere, but maybe it won't be as bad at the Pantheon.

Thanks for the suggestions!
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Old Nov 25th, 2007, 05:57 PM
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I, too, was at the Pantheon for Midnight Mass last Christmas Eve. Make sure you dress warmly. There is a cold north wind coming in through the oculus!
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