With so many buildings in such a bustling and compact Rome neighborhood, it’s not easy to find comfortable and spacious restaurants in Trastevere. Well, we did. And it was a fantastic find where we will certainly go back more than once.
Being Trastevere a very touristy area, sometimes it’s possible to end in some infamous tourist menus/deals. Forget this at Aromaticus restaurant. Here, you can relax and order a delicious, guilt-free meal made of fresh, seasonal veggies, grains like rice or farro, beans and fermented nuts or miso as ingredients for the dressings.
Aromaticus in Trastevere – Review and Handy Guide
Lunch at Aromaticus, our experience
We stopped for lunch at Aromaticus beginning of September, so at the end of the first summer, Rome had almost entirely without tourists due to the Covid-19 pandemic raging all over the world. Trastevere was unusually quiet and so was also Aromaticus, unsurprisingly.
We were offered to stay in their courtyard, which was lovely as the weather was not too hot but still nice and warm. There are few tables in the courtyard and only one was already taken. We grabbed one close to their bench so we had some extra space for our stuff, particularly appreciated since we were with our 11-month-old baby and had all the tools and objects needed for his food. They also brought us a high chair with the precious belts, much necessary with our baby as after he’s done eating he likes to jump off his chair. A proper high chair and also some compatible foods made this one of our favorite baby-friendly restaurants to stop at when we are walking in Rome with our baby.
The waiter brought us the menu and some filtered still water so we could order. A few items on the menu were not available for a number of reasons, the lack of customers being only a marginal one. As I briefly mentioned earlier, their menu includes a number of fermented foods, and some were not available because not ready and still in the fermentation process. Some I wanted to order but couldn’t this time were tempeh and kombucha, a fermented tea packed with probiotics that are beneficial to the intestine. Thankfully they had a lovely lemon water kefir, so our daily intake of probiotics was assured.
The dish I ordered from the menu was a farro bowl but the veggies were different as they only use seasonal produce. What I had was farro with roasted summer veggies and instead of the miso-based dressing, I seasoned it with a delicious and creamy fermented cashew nut dressing.
My husband loved his couscous salad with fresh cherry tomatoes and falafel. On top of that, we ordered Zapata baked potatoes with three types of sauces. Absolutely a treat. We were super full at the end so we couldn’t order any of their desserts, but for next time, I’m planning on avoiding any side dish and picking a final sweet to round off a delicious meal.
Aromaticus Menu and Prices
Aromaticus is a bistro-style restaurant and its fares not expensive. They only use high-quality, possibly slow-food ingredients, so it’s not the 5-euro-salad bar, but for such fulfilling, healthy meals, it’s more than affordable.
Their main courses, which are mainly vegetarian, range from 13 to 15 euro, the side dishes including falafel, veggie pakora, veggie tempura, and Zapata potatoes from 6 to 8 euro. Then there are their salads and bowls ranging from 7 to 14 euros.
This is not one of the vegetarian restaurants in Rome as sometimes their menu includes some meat and fish options, but last time we went it was mainly vegan and some dishes with cheese. Whatever your preference, everything is served with great attention to detail, taste, and always an eye to healthy ingredients and combinations.
The experience of dining at Aromaticus is very pleasant and relaxed. Both their interior and exterior are decorated with plants, light-color wooden furniture, and glass. Exposed is a huge selection of fresh herbs in the pot you can buy, adding to the green character of the place.
At Aromaticus, you can also buy some of their products such as ready kombucha, herbs seeds, and also books about these topics.
What To See And Do Around Aromaticus
It’s not a secret that there are many things to do in Trastevere, so if you are spending either the morning or the afternoon in the neighborhood, you can totally plan your lunch or dinner at Aromaticus. Being the quarter so compact, everywhere is within easy walking reach. Some of the places to see and things to do near Aromaticus are:
- Mercato di Piazza San Cosimato. This is the local daily fresh market of Trastevere. It takes place every morning and it’s a great place to buy your grocery if you are renting an apartment in Rome as opposed to staying in a hotel.
- Eat an artisan gelato. All around Trastevere, you can find some of the best gelato in Rome. Some name? Fatamorgana, Otaleg and Fiordiluna. Fatamorgana is the closest to the restaurant, but also Otaleg and Fiordiluna are a few steps away.
- Visit Santa Maria in Trastevere Basilica. This is the closest Basilica to the restaurant and the most important in Trastevere. Its long history and beautiful mosaics make it one of the must-see landmarks in Trastevere and one of the most famous churches in Rome.
- See Raphael’s frescoes. They are in Villa Farnesina, a short walk from Via Natale del Grande. It’s not expensive to enter and the visit won’t take long, so totally worth doing near Aromaticus.
- Take a food tour. Trastevere is filled with restaurants and places to visit, so a food tour is a great experience. The only problem is that you will eat a lot so it would be better to arrive a bit hungry. But that’s no issue if you are taking an evening food tour in Trastevere as we did: you can enjoy your healthy lunch and take the tour later in the day.
- Enter Santa Cecilia in Trastevere Basilica. On the other side of Viale Trastevere from Natale del Grande is the fantastic site of Santa Cecilia in Trastevere Basilica. I always recommend visiting this church, even if you are in Rome for two days only because it’s rich in historical value with many layers and an archaeological site beneath the street-level church.
- Have a traditional meal. If you have a light and healthy lunch at Aromaticus, there is no reason for dinner you can’t have a hearty Roman traditional meal, especially because in the area is Enzo al 29, one of the best restaurants in Rome. This obviously, in case you are not taking a food tour!
- Have a great pizza. An alternative to a Roman meal is a delicious pizza at Seu Illuminati in Trastevere, in our opinion one of the best pizza places in Rome.
Tips For A Perfect Dining Experience at Aromaticus
This Trastevere restaurant is pretty easygoing, so not much planning is needed. Yet, we can give you a few tips to fully enjoy your experience:
- Book in advance. True, now Rome is not that busy, but this time shall pass, and Trastevere is usually a pretty busy area with both tourists and residents. Plus, in the restaurant itself, seats are limited so booking your table in advance is a good idea.
- Use Google Maps. It’s not difficult to find, but Trastevere is a maze of winding alleys so to avoid getting lost, Google Maps is your friend.
- Try the unknown. Even with original combinations, I was quite familiar with the type of foods on the Aromaticus menu. But I think they are not that common and not many people are familiar with ingredients like miso, tempeh, and other fermented foods. And also with kefir and kombucha as drinks. My heartfelt recommendation here is to try anything that inspires you even if you don’t know what is. All these foods are very healthy and delicious so you won’t be disappointed and for sure you won’t feel heavy after your meal.
Address + How To Reach Aromaticus in Trastevere
- Address: Via Natale Del Grande 6/7.
- Phone number: +39 06 8879 8381.
- Opening hours: 10 am-3.30 pm and 6-10.30 pm.
- How to reach Aromaticus: Take the train to Trastevere station and then the tram 8 to Trastevere Mastai stop. If you are coming from the city center, take tram 8 in Piazza Venezia and get off at the Trastevere Mastai stop. From Viale Trastevere, it’s some 5 minutes walk through Via Francesco Ripa. Check out our guide to Rome public transport to better navigate the city.